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A  Comprehensive  Dictionary  with  Special  Reference  to  the 
Epic    and    Purariic  Literature 



Delhi  Patna  Varanasi 


Indological   Publishers  &  Booksellers 

Head  Office    :    BUNGALOW  ROAD,      JAWAHAR  NAOAR,  DELHl-7 

Branches    :    1.    CHOWK,    VARANASI-1   (u.P.  ) 

2.    ASHOK    RAJPATH,    PATNA-4    (BIHAR) 

ISBN  08426  0822    2 

All  Rights  reserved  by  the  Author 

First   Edition     in  Malayalam  :  Kottayam  :  1964 

Second  Edition ,,        ,,  ,,                  1967 

Third  Edition     ,,        ,,  ,,                   1971 

Fourth  Edition  ,,         ,,  ,,                  1974 

First  Edition  in  English  :   Delhi,   1975 

;  Distributed  by: 
South  Asia  Books 
Box  502 
Columbia,  MO    65201 

Printed  in  India 





I  feel  flattered  and  consider  it  to  be  great  privilege  to  have  been  asked  by  Shri  Vettam  Mani  to 
contribute  a  foreword  to  his  Puranic  Encyclopaedia,  a  really  magnificent  literary  production, 
massive  in  size  and  rich  and  invaluable  in  contents.  This  is  the  first  attempt  in  Malayalam  and  for 
the  matter  of  that  in  any  Indian  or  foreign  language,  so  far  as  I  know,  to  produce  a  comprehensive 
and  well-nigh  exhaustive  book  of  study  and  reference  with  regard  to  episodes,  incidents,  characters 
etc.  occurring  in  the  many  Puranas  and  such  other  works  in  Sanskrit.  In  the  field  of  mythology,  with 
regard  to  variety  and  contents  as  also  sheer  bulk,  Greece  stands  first.  Egypt  comes  only  next.  But 
Indian  mythology — the  epics  and  the  puranas — far  exceeds  and  excels  both  Greek  and  Egyptian  mytho- 
logies put  together  in  merit  and  size.  Even  the  preparation  of  a  complete  list  of  characters  mentioned 
in  our  epics,  puranas  etc.  will  be  a  stupendous  and  well-nigh  impossible  task  calling  for  the  combined 
efforts  of  a  number  of  scholars.  But,  fortunately  for  us,  each  and  every  such  name,  one  need  not 
necessarily  know  or  be  acquainted  with.  At  the  same  time  there  are  great  names  which  compel  atten- 
tion and  should  not  escape  a  proper  study.  And,  such  names  are  legion,  and  Shri  Mani  has  not 
omitted  mention  of  even  one  such  name  in  his  great  work.  I  looked  up  the  encyclopaedia  for  a  few 
such  random  names,  and  was  really  surprised  to  find  detailed  treatment  of  the  same  in  the  book.  More- 
over, with  reference  to  really  important  names,  incidents  and  episodes  connected  with  them  and  the 
whole  genealogy  are  given.  Everything  is  fully  documented  and  quite  authoritative.  And,  deep, 
extensive  and  exhaustive  study,  patient  and  untiring  research  and  above  all  absolute  dedication  to  the 
cause  are  so  very  patent  on  every  page  of  the  book.  Literally  and  in  effect  Shri  Mani's  is  a  unique 
contribution,  the  first  and  foremost  book,  in  the  magnificent  spheres  of  religion,  culture,  scholar- 
ship and  history  all  put  together.  As  the  pioneer  in  the  field  he  can  justly  feel  happy  and  proud  about 
his  rare  achievement,  and  he  deserves  in  ample  measure  the  unstinted  praise  and  appreciation  of  all 
lovers  of  learning  and  culture. 

Shri  Mani  has  already  earned  well-deserved  reputation  as  a  teacher,  especially  in  Malayalam, 
and  also  as  a  diligent  student  of  literature  and  author  of  talent.  He  evidently  possesses  a  flair  for 
research.  All  such  distinguished  talents  and  attainments  of  his  have  been  fully  and  quite  successfully 
commissioned  in  the  preparation  of  this  marvellous  encyclopaedia.  He  has  put  every  lover  of  learning 
and  knowledge  everywhere,  under  an  eternal  debt  of  gratitude  by  the  publication  of  this  noble  work. 


Retired  Judge,  Chief  Court,  Cochin  and 
Ex-President  Keral    Sahitya  Academy. 


It  is  a  matter  of  profound  pleasure  and  pride  for  me  that  the  internationally  famous  publishers 
in  the  field  of  Indology,  M/s  Motilal  Banarsidass  of  Delhi  are  publishing  the  English  translation  of  my 
Puranic  Encyclopaedia,  which  was  originally  published  in  Malayalarn,  and  which  has  already  run 
into  four  editions. 

The  Puranas  along  with  the  Great  Epics — the  Ramayana  and  the  Mahabharata,  have  for 
centuries,  profoundly  influenced  Indian  life  and  Culture.  The  well-known  definition  of  a  Purana 
as  a  work  having  five  characteristic  features — purdnam  paiicalakfanam — namely,  primary  creation,  secon- 
dary creation,  the  genealogies,  the  ages  of  Manu,  and  the  dynastic  account  hardly  does  justice  to  the 
full  significance  of  these  works.  They  are  much  more  than  that.  While  their  genealogies  and  the 
dynastic  account  form  the  bed-rock  of  the  political  history  of  ancient  India,  they  throw  a  flood  of  light 
on  all  aspects  of  Indian  Culture — its  religion,  social  practices,  art,  literature  and  sciences.  They  serve 
as  the  key  to  the  proper  understanding  of  the  various  aspects  of  Hinduism — its  beliefs,  its  modes  of 
worship,  its  mythology,  its  festivals,  feasts,  and  fasts,  its  sacred  shrines  and  places  of  pilgrimage,  its  philo- 
sophy and  ethics  and  its  theogony.  Truly  it  has  been  said  that  a  Brahmin  was  not  really  wise  if  he  did 
not  know  the  Puranas.  The  study  of  ancient  Indian  history,  and  culture — particularly  religion — is 
impossible  without  a  proper  knowledge  of  the  Puranas.  As  a  matter  of  fact,  it  is  virtually  impossible 
to  understand  not  only  ancient  Indian  culture  and  life,  but  also  the  literature  in  modern  Indian 
languages,  as  it  largely  draws  upon  the  ideas  and  ideologies  as  embodied  in  the  contents  of  the  Puranas 
and  the  epics. 

The  literary  writings  in  all  Indian  languages  are  indebted  to  the  Epics  and  the  Puranas  in  more  than 
one  way — their  form,  content,  ideas  and  ideologies  are  all  influenced  to  a  greater  or  lesser  extent  by  these 
ancient  works.  Direct  and  indirect  allusions  to  Puranic  episodes,  characters,  events,  are  frequently 
to  be  met  with  in  the  literary  writings  of  all  Indian  languages.  Teachers  engaged  in  imparting  instruc- 
tion in  the  literature  in  modern  Indian  languages  must  therefore  be  conversant  with  the  contents  of 
the  Puranas  and  Epics  in  order  to  be  able  to  explain  these  allusions  wherever  they  occur  in  the 
writings  in  modern  Indian  languages.  However,  it  is  well  nigh  impossible  for  an  average  teacher  to  go 
through  the  whole  of  this  vast  literature.  Thus  the  need  for  a  handy  work  of  reference  like  the  present 
Encyclopaedia  is  apparent. 

The  desire  to  compile  a  Purar  ic  Dictionary  that  should  solve  many  of  the  day  to  day  problems  of 
the  Indian  language  teacher,  took  root  in  me,  several  years  ago,  but  I  could  not  arrogate  to  myself  the 
capacity  to  fulfill  this  urgent  need.  I  waited  for  many  years,  for  more  competent  and  better  equipped 
scholars  to  come  forward  and  produce  a  work  of  my  dreams.  But  since  no  one  appeared  to  quench 
this  thirst,  I  plunged  myself  into  this  vast  ocean  of  Sanskrit  literature,  and  for  thirteen  years  I  dived 
deep  into  it,  studying  not  only  the  original  texts  but  also  modern  works  in  English,  Sanskrit,  Malayalam 
and  Hindi.  This  took  me  five  years,  and  I  spent  about  twenty  thousand  rupees  on  books  and  travelling 
for  this  project.  I  started  the  compilation  on  1st  of  January,  1955,  and  it  took  me  seven  years  to  start 
preparing  the  Press  copy  of  my  work.  The  first  volume  of  my  'Puranic  Nighantu'  was  released  in 
February  1964  and  the  remaining  four  were  published  after  an  interval  of  six  months  in  each  case. 
The  second  edition  of  all  the  five  volumes  was  brought  out  in  May  1967,  still  under  the  original  title 
'Puranic  Nighantu'.  However,  in  the  third  revised  and  enlarged  edition  in  one  volume  published  in 
October,  1971,  the  name  was  changed  to  'Puranic  Encyclopaedia'. 

In  an  endeavour  like  this  imperfections  and  drawbacks  are  only  inevitable,  and  I  am  fully  cons- 
cious of  the  same.  But  as  a  pioneer  effort,  and  as  a  much  needed  aid  to  the  teaching  and  study  of 
Malayalam  language  and  literature,  it  will,  I  hope,  be  found  useful.  Scholars  and  general  readers  in 
Malayalam  have  been  generous  in  welcoming  the  encyclopaedia.  That  four  editions  of  the  work  had 
to  be  brought  out  within  a  period  of  seven  years  from  1 967  to  1 974  speaks  eloquently  for  the  merit,  and 
utility  of  the  work  and  I  feel  my  labour  and  expense  amply  rewarded.  I  felt  still  more  flattered  when 
the  celebrated  firm  of  M/s  Motilal  Banarsidass  of  Delhi,  who  have  already  laid  the  world  of  Indology 
under  a  deep  debt  of  obligation  by  their  monumental  publications  in  all  fields  of  Indian  Culture  and  his- 
tory, mooted  a  proposal  for  publishing  an  English  translation  of  the  Malayalam  original.  I  am  deeply 
indebted  to  them  for  bringing  my  work  before  a  much  wider  circle  of  readers.  The  onerous  task  of 
translating  the  work  into  English  was  entrusted  to  a  committee  of  five  scholars  :  1.  Mr.  P.  Rajaram 

Menon,  Professor  of  English,  Basel  mission  College,  Kottayam;  2.  Mr.  K.  R.  Atchutan  Nayar,  retired 
Professor  of  English,  C.M.S.  College,  Kottayam;  3.  R.  K.  Kartha,  ex-Chief  Editor,  Deshbandhu, 
Kottayam;  4.  P.I.John,  Retired  Headmaster,  Kurichi  ;  and  5.  Mr.  P.  N.  Menon,  Ollur. 
I  need  hardly  point  out  that  these  members  of  the  editorial  committee  are  highly  qualified  for 
this  work  and  I  must  gladly  acknowledge  the  fact  that  they  have  more  than  amply  justified  the  trust 
placed  in  them. 

Finally,  I  cannot  adequately  express  my  feelings  of  deep  gratitude  to  Shri  Puthezathu  Rama 
Menon,  the  doyen  of  Malayalam  literature,  for  writing  an  excellent  introduction  to  the  original 
Malayalam  edition  of  the  work.  I  am  also  beholden  to  many  scholars  and  the  reading  public  who 
have  been  pleased  to  extend  a  most  generous  welcome  to  the  Encyclopaedia. 


22.2.1975  VETTAM    MANI 

Puranic  Encyclopaedia 


A     (si).     The  first  letter  (Vowel)  of  all  Indian  languages. 

According  to  the  Nanartharatnamala    this  letter  has  the 

following    meanings:— Brahma,    Visnu,     Siva,  tortoise, 

courtyard,  battle,  harem,  jewellery,  sea,  Parvati  and  bow- 
string. . 
ABALA  is  one  of  the  fifteen  devas  who  were   the   sons  ot 

Paiicajanya.  (M.B.  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  22,  Verse  11). 
ABHAYA  was  one  of   the   sons  of  Dhrtarastra.    He  was 

killed  by   Bhimasena.    (M.B.    Adi    Parva,  Chapter  67, 

Verse  104;  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  127,  Verse  62). 
ABHAYAM.      King    Idhmajihva    divided    his    kingdom 

Plaksadvlpa  into  seven    parts    and    gave    them  to  his 

severi  sons.  Abhayam  is  one  of  the  parts.  The  other  six 

parts  are:— Sivarh,      Yamasarii,   Subhadram,     Santam, 

Ksemarh  and  Amrtam.  See  "Idhmajihva".    (Bhagavata, 

5th  Skandha,  Chapter  20,   Verse  2).  It   is  seen  (from 

M.B.  Sabha    Parva,    Chapter   30,    Verse  9)    that    the 

territory     known     as     Abhayam     was     conquered   by 

Bhimasena.  (See  Foot-note) 
ABHIBHU.  He  was  a  King,  the  son    of  the  King  ot  Kasi 

and  a  relative  of  the  Pandavas.  He  was  killed  by    the 

son  of  King    Vasudana.    He    had    a    most    wonderful 

horse.  (M.B.  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter     151,   Verse  63; 

Kama    Parva,    Chapter  6,  Verses  23-24;  Drona  Parva, 

Verses  26-27). 

ABHIMANYU  I.  He  was  the  heroic  son  of  Arjuna  the  cen- 
tral figure  of  the  Mahabharata,  by  his  wife  Subhadra. 

1)  Genealogy.  He  was  descended  from  Visnu  in  this  order: 

Brahma-Atri-Candra-Budha-Pururavas  -  Ayus  -  Nahusa- 

Yayati-Puru-Janamejaya-  Pracinva  -  Pravira  -  Namasyu- 

Vltabhaya-Sundu-Bahuvidha-Sarhyati-Rahovadi  -  Raud- 

rasva-Matinara-Santurodha-Dusyanta  -  Bharata  -Brhat- 

ksatra-Hasti-  Ajamidha-Rksa-Sariivarana  -Kuru-Jahnu- 

Siiratha  -  Viduratha-Sarvabhauma  -Jayatsena  -  Raviya  - 

Bhavuka-Cakroddhata-Devatithi  -  Rksa-Bhima  -  Pratlya- 


2}  Purvajanma    (Previous  Birth}.  There   is  a  story  about 

Abhimanyu's  Purvajanma  in  the  Mahabharata.  It   was 

Varcas,   son  of  Candra,  who  incarnated  as  Abhimanyu, 

son  of  Arjuna.  A  conference  took   place    between  the 

Devas  and  Candra  about  the  incarnation  of  the  Devas 

in  the  world  for  the  destruction  of  the  wicked  people. 

Candra  told  the  Devas:  "I  do  not  like  to  send  Varcas, 

whom  I  love  more  than  my  life,  to  the  earth.  Still,   I 

think  it  is  not  right  to  stand  in  the  way  of  the  plans  oi 

the  gods.  You  must  agree  to  one  condition  if  I  am  to 

send  my  son.  Let  him  be  born    as    the  son    of  Arjuna. 

I  am  unable  to  be  separated  from  him  for  more  than 

sixteen  years.  My  son  will  enter  into  the  Cakra  Vyuha 

of  the  enemies  to  be  killed  by  them  and  return  to  me 

in  the  sixteenth  year."  The  devas  (gods)    accepted  this 

condition.  That  is  why   Abhimanyu   was  killed   m  his 

sixteenth  year.  (M.B.  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  67). 

3 )  Military  Training  and   War.   Abhimanyu  received  his 
training   in   arms   from   his    father  Arjuna.   Later,    he 

went  with  his  mother  Subhadra  to  Dvaraka  and  lived 

for  some  time  with  his  uncle  Sri  Krsna.    There  he  is 

said  to  have  received  training  in  arms  from  Pradyumna, 

son    of  Sri    Krsna.    After     the     incognito   life    of    the 

There  seems  to  be  some  difference  of  opinion  regarding  the  number    of    parts  into   which  King   Idhmajihva  divided 

In   the  BhSvata  th°  number   mentioned   is  Seven;     but   in   the   Malayalam   version  of  te*^*<fr*™™&*  AbSTifc 
the   number   is  eieht       The     original    Bhagavata    says:     "Sivam     Yamasam,     Subhadram,     Santam,     Ksemam,     Amrtam    ADnayam 
VarsaTSu  girTyo  nadyalca  sap"a%abhijlatah".    In   the  Malayalam   Bhagavata  an  eighth  division  called  S.vadam  ,s  seen. 

Pandavas,  Abhimanyu  married  Uttara,  daughter  of 
the  King  of  Virata.  War  broke  out  between  Kauravas 
and  Pandavas.  On  the  first  day  itself  Abhimanyu 
entered  into  a  duel  with  Brhatbala,  King  of  Kosala. 
In  the  terrible  conflict  with  Bhlsma,  Abhimanyu  broke 
Bhisma's  flagstaff.  After  that  he  assisted  his  father  Arjuna 
to  fight  against  Bhlsma.  Verses  8-13  of  Chapter  55  of 
Bhlsma  Parva  of  the  Mahabharata  describe  Abhi- 
manyu's fight  with  Laksmana  in  the  second  day's  battle. 
Then  he  took  his  place  in  the  Ardha  Candra  Vyuha 
(semi-circular  phalanx)  formed  by  Arjuna.  He  fought 
fiercely  with  the  Gandharas.  He  attacked  Salya  and  kill- 
ed Jayatsena,  King  of  Magadha,  along  with  his  elephant. 
We  find  Abhimanyu  assisting  Bhimasena  in  M.B.  Bhlsma 
Parva,  Chapters  63,  64,  69  and  94.  After  that 
Abhimanyu  defeated  Laksmana  in  battle.  Then  he 
defeated  Vikarna,  Citrasena  and  others  also.  Later  he 
took  his  position  in  the  Srrigataka  Vyuha  created  by 
Dhrstadyumna.  He  started  fighting  with  Bhagadatta. 
He  defeated  Ambastha  and  Alambusa.  Next  he  fought  a 
duel  with  Sudisna.  After  that  he  encountered  Duryo- 
dhana,  Brhatbala  and  others.  M.B.  Drona  Parva, 
Chapter  10,  Verses  47-52  are  a  description  of  Abhi- 
manyu's heroism  by  Dhrtarastra.  He  snatched  Paurava's 
weapon  and  threw  it  on  the  ground.  Next  he  fought 
with  Jayadratha  and  Salya.  Then  he  was  caught  in  the 
Cakra  Vyuha  (circular  phalanx)  of  the  enemies. 
There  he  inflicted  great  losses  upon  the  enemy  forces. 
Salya  was  stunned  and  his  brother  was  killed  by 
Abhimanyu.  M.B.  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  38,  Verses  23 
and  24  describe  the  flight  of  the  Kauravas  in  fear.  At 
this  stage,  even  Dronacarya  praised  Abhimanyu's 
valour.  Dussasana  fainted  during  his  fight  with  Abhi- 
manyu. Kama  was  defeated.  Vrsasena,  SatyaSravas 
and  Salya's  son,  Rugmaratha  were  slain.  Duryodhana 
fled.  Laksmana  was  killed.  Vrndaraka,  Asvatthama, 
Kama  and  others  were  amazed  by  this  terrible  valour 
of  Abhimanyu.  Six  ministers  of  Kama  were  slain. 
Next,  Asvaketu,  son  of  the  King  of  Magadha  was 
killed.  King  Bhoja  was  also  killed.  Salya  was  again 
defeated.  Satrunjaya,  Candraketu,  Meghavega,  Suvarcas, 
Suryabhasa — who  were  all  kings — were  beheaded  by 
Abhimanyu.  Sakuni  was  wounded  by  Abhimanyu's 
arrow.  Kalakeya,  son  of  Subala  was  slain.  M.B.  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  40,  Verses  13  and  14  say  that  at  this 
stage,  Prince  Dus'sasana  beat  Abhimanyu  to  death  with 
his  mace. 

4)  After  Death.  M.B.  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  71,  Verses 
12-16  say  that  after  death    Abhimanyu    attained    the 
immortal  world   of  the  Munis    (Saints).  King  Pariksit 
was  the  son  of  Abhimanyu.    In    M.B.    Svargarohana 
Parva,  Chapter  5,  Verses  18-20,  we  find  that  after  his 
death,  Abhimanyu  entered  the  moon  in  his  former  form 
of  Varcas. 

5)  Other  names    of  Abhimanyu.    In    the    Mahabharata 
Abhimanyu  has  been  referred  to  by  several  otherjiames, 
such  as  ARJUNI,    Saubhadra,  Karsni,    Arjunatmaja, 
Sukratmajatmaja,  Arjunapara  and  Phalguni. 

6)  Other  details.  King  Pariksit   was  the   son    of  Abhi- 
manyu. Janamejaya  was  born  as  his  son.  It  was  Janame- 


jaya  who  performed  Sarpasatra    (A  yaga)  Satanika  t  was 
Ihesonof  Janamejaya.     Salfuiika    had  a    so       named 

Sahasrfmika.  King  Udayana,  l11^'6^1^  ,,m'ka  by 
Vam<a  (Lunar  dynasty)  was  born  to  Sahasiamk 
the  goddess  Mr^vati  (Sec  'Udayana',  stones  about 
his  Udavana  2?  very  famous.  Kalidasa  has  mentioned 
n  his  "Meghaduta"  about  the  old  rustics  who  thronged 
tho  ,,,umrv  sides  to  tell  and  listen  to  Udayana  stones). 
(Kathasaritsagara,  Madana  Kancukalambaka, 

ABTHIM\NYU  II.  One  of  the  sons  of  Manu.  The  ten 
sons  born  to  Manu  by  Nadvala  were:  Kuru,  Puru, 
SattdvSmna,  Tapaavl,  Satyavan,  Sue,  Agnistoma, 
Adhiratra,  Sudvumna  and  Abhimanyu.  (Visnu  Purana, 

PARVA.    A  part  (branch)  of 
DronaParva.  (See  "Mahabharata",. 

ABHINAYA.  In  Agni  Purana,  Chapter  342,  Abhinaya 
has  been  defined  as  follows:  Abhinaya  is  the  art  oi 
presenting  before  the  people  the  ideas  that  are  to  be 
fommunkated  to  them.  There  are  four  divisions  of 
this  art  known  as  Sattvika,  Vacika,  Ang.ka  and  Aharya 
depending  on  Sattva,  Vak,  Anga  and  Aharya.  Besides 
these,  another  division  known  as  Abhimamka  (Abhi- 
manottha)  may  also  be  mentioned.  This  signifies  the 
expression  of  rasas  like  Srhgara.  There  are  two  kinds 
of  Srngara  known  as  Sarhbhoga  and  Vipralambha. 
Four'  varieties  of  Vipralambha  called  Purvanuraga 
Vipralambha,  Mana  Vipralambha,  Pravasa  Vipra- 
lambha and  Karuna  Vipralambha  are  mentioned.  The 
union  after  Vipralambha  is  Sambhoga-Srngara.  All 
Sattvika  bhavas  are  included  in  Srrigara.  All  these  have 
to  be  expressed  through  Abhinaya. 

ABHIRU.  A  Rajarsi  who  was  born  of  the  sixth 
Kalakeya.  (M.B.  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  67,  Verse  5 

ABHISAKAM.  A  Janapada  (Village)  of  ancient  India. 
The'  warriors  of  this  Janapada  were  called  Abhisakas. 
(M.B.  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  18,  Verse  12;  Chapter 
93,  Verse  2). 

ABHISARAM.  A  Janapada  of  ancient  India.  (M.B. 
Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  94). 

ABHISARl.  Arjuna  conquered  this  city,  which  was 
one  of  the  ancient  cities  of  India,  in  the  course  of 
his  Digvijaya  (conquest  of  the  world). 

ABHISYANTA.  A  son  born  to  Maharaja  Kuru  by 
Vahini.  He  had  three  brothers  named  Caitraratha, 
Muni  and  Janamejaya.  Abhisyanta  was  the  younger 
brother  of  ASvavan  and  elder  brother  of  Caitraratha. 
(M.B.  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  94,  Verses  50-51). 

AC  ALA  I.I)  General.  Acala  was  the  son  of  Subala,  a 
King  of  Gandhara.  He  was  Sakuni's  brother  and  a 
heroic  Charioteer  on  the  side  of  the  Kauravas.  (M.B. 
Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  168,  Verse  1). 

2)  Acala   had  also  taken  part  in  Yudhisfhira's  Raja- 
suya.  (A  very  expensive  sacrifice—  yaga  —  performed  by 
an  emperor.)  (M.B.  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  34,  Verse  7). 

3)  Acala  had  a  brother  named  Vrsaka.    In  the    battle 
between  the   Kauravas    and  Pandavas,  Arjuna    killed 
Acala  and  Vrsaka.   (M.B.  Drona  Parva,    Chapter    30, 
Verse  11). 

4)  One  night  Vyasa  summoned  the  departed  holy  souls 
and    Acala    also   was    among     them.      (M.B.     Asva- 
medhika  Parva,  Chapter  32,  Verse  12). 


ACALA  II.  Name  of  a  bull.  Among  the  parsadas  of 
Skanda  we  see  the  bull  named  Acala.  (M.B.  Salya 
Parva,  Chapter  85,  Verse  74). 

ACALA   III.    An    epithet    of  Mahavisnu.    Among 
thousand  names  oi  Mahavisnu  we  see  the  name  Acala 
also.  (M.B.  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  149,  Verse  92). 

ACALA.  Subrahmanya,  who  was  born  from  Siva  s 
semen  which  fell  into  the  fire,  was  made  Commander- 
in-Chief  (Generalissimo)  by  the  gods  to  kill  Turakasura. 
A  large  number  of  warriors  and  mothers  were 
assigned  to  assist  him.  A  woman  named  Acala  was  in- 
cluded among  those  mothers.  (M.B.  Salya  Parva, 
Chapter  40,  Verse  14). 

ACCHODA.  A  spiritual  daughter  of  the  Pitrs.  (For 
further  details  see  "Amavasu"). 

ACCHODASARAS.     A    river,  who  was  the  daughter  o 
the  Pitrs  called  Agnisvattas.  (Hari  Vamsa,  Chapter  18, 
Verse   26). 

ACYUTA.    (See  Visnu). 

ACYUTAYU.     He  was  a  heroic  warrior  on  the  J 

side.  Srutayu  was  the  brother  of  Acyutayu.  Both  of 
them  were  killed  by  Arjuna  in  the  Kaurava-Pandava 
battle.  These  heroes  attacked  Arjuna  and  Sri  Krsna 
furiously  with  their  arrows  and  Arjuna  had  some 
difficulty  in  killing  them.  (M.B.  Drona  Parva,  Chapter 
93,  Verses  7-42) . 

ACYUTA  STHALA.  This  is  an  ancient  village  in 
India.  In  ancient  times  Sudras  of  mixed  castes 
inhabited  this  region.  (M.B.  Vana  Parva,  Chapter 
129,  Verse  9). 

ADHARMA.  A  description  of  the  lineage  oi  Adharma 
is  found  in  Agni  Purana.  Hirhsa  (violence)  is  the 
consort  of  Adharma.  The  couple  procreated  two 
children,  Anrta  and  Nikrti,  and  from  them  sprang 
up  Bhaya  (fear),  Naraka  (Hell),  Maya  (illusion), 
Vedana  (pain)  etc.  And,  out  of  them  Maya  brought 
forth  Death,  the  destroyer  of  (all)  objects.  Vedana,  in 
its  turn  produced  Sorrow  and  Grief  out  of  Raurava. 
From  Death  were  born  Disease,  Senility,  Sorrow,  Intense 
desire  and  Anger.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  20). 

ADHARMA.  Adharma  is  a  person  who  is  an  embodi- 
ment of  Adharmas.  (M.B.  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  66, 
Verse  53).  Adharma's  wife  Nirrti  delivered  3  children; 
Bhaya,  Mahabhaya  and  Mrtyu.  Adharma  had  another 
son,  Darpa  (conceit)  born  of  Wealth.  (M.B.  Santi 
Parva,  Chapter  90,  Verse  27). 

ADHAS"£lRAS    I    was  a  great  sage.  Sri  Krsna   is  said 
have  met  the  sage  on  his  way  to    Hastinapura.      (M.B. 
Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  33,    Verse   64). 

ADHASSIRAS  II.  There  is  a  reference  in  Visnu 
Purana  to  a  hell  called  Adhassiras.  (Visnu  Purana,  Part 

2,  Chapter  6). 

ADHlRA.  A  King;  also  a  great  devotee  oi  Lord  biva. 
Once  he  decreed  death  penalty  on  an  innocent  woman. 
He  also  destroyed  with  his  own  hands  a  temple  of  Siva. 
As  a  consequence  of  those  two  sinful  deeds  he  became 
a  devil  after  death.  Ultimately  by  the  grace  of  Siva 
he  cast  off  the  devil's  form  and  became  an  attendant  of 
Siva.  (Padma  Purana,  Patala  Khanda,  Chapter  111). 

ADHIRAJYA.  A  Kingdom  in  ancient  India,  described 
in  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  44.  Today  this  place 
is  known  as  Rewa. 

ADHIRATHA.  Foster    father    of  Karna. 

1)  Lineage.  Descended  from  Visnu  thus   :  Brahma-Atri- 
Candra-PurQravas-Ayus  -  Nahusa  -  Yayati  -  Anudruhyu- 



Sutapas  -  Bali   -  Aiiga    -    Dadhivahana    -    Draviratha- 
Dharmaratha  -  Gitraratha  -    Satyaratha  -  Romapada- 
Caturaiiga-Prthu  -  Camba  -  Haryamga  -  Bhadraratha- 
Brhadratha-Brhanmanas-Jayadratha  -  Dhrtavrta  -  Satya- 
karma-Adhiratha-Karna  (foster  son). 
2)     Foster   father    of  Karna.     Sage  Durvasas  had  taught 
Kunti  some  mantras  to  get  children,  and    KuntI,    then 
unmarried,  tested    the    first  mantra   with    the    Sun-god 
as  her  object.     The  Sun-god    appeared    before   Kunti 
and  from  his  power  she  conceived  and  duly  delivered  a 
child,  Kama.     Fearing    obloquy    KuntI  concealed    the 
child  in  a  box  and  floated  it  on  the  river,  Ganges.  At  the 
timeAdhiratha,  a   great    comrade  of  Dhrtarastra   came 
to  the     river  for  a  bath.     His  wife  was  one  grieving 
over  not  having  a  child  of  her  own.  So,  when  Adhiratha 
found   a  child    in  the  floating  box,  he  took  it    home, 
and  himself  and  his  wife  Radha  brought  up  the  chile 
with  pleasure.     The  child    was  named  Vasusena,  and 
the  child  grew  up  to  become    the    famous  _Karna  and 
favourite    friend   of  Duryodhana.     (M.B.    Adi    Parva, 
Chapters     67  and     130;    Vana    Parva,    Chapter    309; 
Devibhagavata,  Skandha  2). 

3)     Some  particulars.     Adhiratha  was  King  of  Anga.  He 
was  a    Suta    (charioteer)      and    Karna   grew  up  as   his 
son.     Karna   was    sent  to  Hastinapura     to     be  trained 
in  the  use'  of    weapons,    and   it  was  here  that  Duryo- 
dhana    and    Karna    developed    their    friendship    and 
alliance.      (M.B.    Adi    Parva,   Chapter     147,  Verse  3). 
Sri      Mahadevlbhagavata,      in     Chapter  3  relates 
following  incident  :    "Thus  lamenting   Kunti  sent  the 
box  concealing  Karna,   by  the  nurse,  to  be  floated  m 
the  river,  and  after  bath,  food  etc.  she  spent  the  hours 
in  the  normal  way  within  the  inner  apartment.   Raja 
Adhiratha  bathing  in  the  river  saw  the  box  floating  in 
the  river".     These  facts  prove  that  Adhiratha  was  not 
only  the  King  of  Aiiga  but  a  good    charioteer    as  well, 
and  further  a  very  good  friend  of  Dhrtarastra. 
4)     We  come  across  Adhiratha  on  the  occasion  oi  the 
trial  of  skill  in  the  use  of  arms  between   the   Kaurayas 
and   the     Pandavas.   When    Karna    entered    the 
the  Pandavas  questioned   his    nobility  of  birth.    Seeing 
Kama's  great  humiliation  and  discomfiture  Duryodhana 
enthroned  him  immediately    as  King  of  Aiiga.    Vyasa, 
who  witnessed  the  scene  has    given  a    picturesque  des- 
cription   of  it.  ... 
ADHOKSAJA.     A  synonym  of  Maha  Visnu.    (Kamsan- 

radhoksajah — Amarakosa). 

ADHRIGU.  '  A  great  sage   (Maharsi)    who  lived  during 
the    Rgvedic   period.     (Rgveda,  Mandala    1,    Anuvaka 
16,    S'ukta    112). 
ADHRSYA.     A  river.  (M.B.  Bhisma    Parva,  Chapter  y, 

Verse  24). 

ADHYAPAYANA.  A  disciple  of  the  great  preceptor  ot 
Atharvaveda,  Sumantu.  He  divided  Atharvaveda 
into  two  parts  and  gave  one  to  Utatthya  and  the  other 
to  Vedadarsana.  (Bhagavata,  Skandha  12). 

ADITI.  1)  Genealogy.  KaSyapa,  grandson  of  Brahma  and 
son  of  Marici  married  Aditi,  daughter  of  Daksapraja- 
pati.  Aditi  had  twelve  sisters:  Diti,  Kala,  Danayus, 
Danu,  Sirhhika,  Krodha,  Prtha,  Visva,  Vinata,  Kapila, 

'  Muni  and  Kadru.  (Mahabharata,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter 
65,  Verse  12).  Devas  are  sons  born  to  Kasyapa  by  Aditi 
and  hence  they  are  known  as  Aditeyas  also.  Kasyapa 
married  all  the  thirteen  sisters  including  Aditi,  and 

all  living  beings    owe  their  origin    to  them.  (See  Kas- 

Descendants.  33  sons  were  born  to  Aditi.  12  lofi  them 
are  called  Dvadasadityas,  viz.  Dhata,  Aryama   Mi    a, 
Sakra,  Varuna,  Amsa,  Bhaga,  Vivasvan    Pusa    Savita 
Tvasta  and  Visnu.  Amongst  the  other  21  sons  are  the 
11    Rudras   and    8    Vasus.    (See    M.B.    Adi 

S5"a642Sl!V;  ««  "•**?  r  r  ;± 

son  of  Aditi.     The    Mahabharata  and    the  Ramayana 
refe    to  a  story  about  the  birth    of  Mahav.sra  i  as  the 
son    of    Aditi.    Visnu  entered  the  womb  of  Adi 
Vamana  (Dwarf).    This  story  was  related  by  the  sage 
vfsvlmitra    to    the    boys    Rama  and  Laksmana  while 
they  were  accompanying  the  sage  in  the  forest  When 
hev  entered   Siddhasrama   Visvamitra  pointed  I  to  _tr 
atTer  "hat  the  Asrama  was  sacred  because  ****** 
had   stayed   there    for   long    as  Vamana.    The  D 
induced  Mahavisnu  to  obstruct  the  sacrifice    (yaga) 
being    performed    by    Emperor     Mahabah      son 
Virocana.    At  that    time  Aditi,  the    wife  of  Kasyapa 
was  doing  penance  so  that  Mahavisnu  might  be  born 
Ts   her   sonf  and   accordingly  he  entered    her   v,omb. 
1000  years  later  she  gave  birth  to  Visnu,  and  that  child 
was  known    as    Vamana.     (See    Vamana;  also   M.B. 
Vana  Park  Chapter  272    Verse  62   Anusasana  Parva, 
Chapter  83,  Verses  25  and  26,  as  also  Valmiki  . 

2Reoti.  Once  Kasyapa  made  all  arrange- 
ments to  perform  a  sacrifice  (yaga)     Having  faded  to 
aS  the  suitable  cow  for  it,   he  stole  Varuna's  cow  and 
onducted  the  yaga.  Not  only   that,  Kasyapa  refused 
to  return  the  SS    even    after    the   yaga    was    over. 
Varuna  in  hot  anger  rushed  to  Kasyapa  s    hermitage. 
Ka^yapa  was  absent,  and  his  wives,  Aditi  and  Surasa 
did  not  treat  Varuna  with  due  respect    The  enraged 
Varuna  cursed  them  to   be   born  in   Gokula    He   also 
complained  about  the  matter  to  Brahma.  Brahma  told 
Syapa  :   "Since   you,   a  learned  person,  have  stolen 
S  cow,  may  you  along  with  your  wives   be  born    in 
Gokula  and    tend  cows".    Accordingly  Kasyapa     and 
Ws  wives,  Aditi  and  Surasa,  were  born  respectively  as 
Vasudeva,  DevakI  and  RohinI  in  Gokula  in    the    28th 
Dvlpara  ^ga.    (This   story  has   been    told   by  Vyasa 
to  Raja  Janlmejaya).  (Devibhagavata,  Skandha  4 
3      Aditi  in  prison'.  Devaki  is  Aditi   reborn    There  was 
reason  for  DevakI  being  imprisoned  on   the   orders   of 
Kamsa.  When  Kasyapa  was  hvmg  in  an  Asrama  with 
Aditi   and  Diti   he  was   so  much    pleased 
fervices  of  Aditi    that    he    asked  her  to  beg  for  any 
Wn    she     wished.     Accordingly  she  prayed   for  an 
S  son.    The  boon  was  readily  granted    and    ndra 
was  the  son  thus  born   to    her.     The   birth   of  Indra 
™dered  jealousy   in   Diti    towards   Aditi,   and  she 
^demanded  a  son  equal  to  Indra.     Kasyapa  obliged 
Diti    also.     As  Diti  advanced  in  pregnancy  and  her 
beauty  also  increased  Aditi   got  jealous  of  the  former 
and  she  called   her  son  Indra  and  told  him   that  unless 
something   was    done   in    time,    Diti    would  deliver  a 
child  equal  to  him   (Indra)   thus  relegating  him   pro- 
bably to  the  place  of  second  Deva.  Thus  admonished 
by  his  mother  the  artful  Indra  approached  Diti  and 
told  her:  "Mother,  I  have  come  to  serve  you   .    I 
was  greatly  pleased.    Indra's    services    drove 
sYeep    very  quickly,  and  Indra  used    the    opportunity 



to  cuter  the  womb  of  Dili  and  cut  into  49  pieces  the 
child  with  his  weapon,  the  Vajra.  The  child  in  the 
womb  began  crying  on  receiving  cuts  with  Vajra  when 
Indra  asked  it  not  to  cry.  (Ma  ruda,  don't  cry)  and 
so  the  child  got  out  of  Dili's  womb  as  49  Marutas 
(winds).  Then  did  Dili  wake  up  and  cursed  Aditi  as 
follows  :  "Your  son  did  treacherously  kill  my 
offspring  in  the  womb  itself.  So  he  will  forfeit  the 
three  worlds.  You  were  responsible  for  the  murder  of 
my  child.  You  will,  therefore,  have  to  spend  days  in 
prison  grieving  over  your  children.  Your  children  also 
will  be  annihilated".  Because  of  this  curse  of  Diti, 
Indra  once  lost  Devaloka  and  had  to  live  elsewhere, 
and  Nahusa  functioned,  for  a  time  as  Indra.  (See 
Nahusa).  In  the  28th  Dvapara  yuga  Aditi  trans- 
formed as  DevakI  had  to  be  a  captive  of  Kamsa,  and 
Kaihsa  killed  her  children  by  dashing  them  on  the 
ground.  (Devlbhagavata,  Skandha  4). 

4.  Narakasura  stole  the  earrings   of  Aditi.  Narakasura,  who 
turned  out  to  be  a  curse  and  menace  to  the  three  worlds 
consequent  on  the  boon  he    got  from  Visnu,  attacked 
Devaloka  once,  and  carried  off  Indra's  royal  umbrella 
and  Aditi's  earrings.  Mahavisnu  incarnated  himself  as 
Sri  Krsna,  killed  Narakasura  in  battle  and  got  back  the 
earrings   etc.   (M.B.  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  48,  Verse 
80;    Sabha  Parva,    Chapter  38,  Verse    29;    Bhagavata 
Dasama  Skandha). 

5.  Mahavisnu   became   seven   times  son  to  Aditi.  Once,  de- 
sirous   of  having   children  Aditi   cooked   food    (rice) 
sitting  herself  in  the  entrails  of  Mount  Mynaka   (M.B. 
Aranya  Parva,    Chapter  135,  Verse  3).  Dharmaputra, 
in  the  course  of  singing  the  glories  of  Lord  Krsna  after 
the    great    war   refers  to  Visnu  having    taken    birth 
seven  times  in  the  womb  of  Aditi.    (M.B.  Santi  Parva, 
Chapter  43,  Verse  6). 

6.  Budha  cursed  Aditi.  A  story  in  the  Mahabharata 
refers  to  Budha's  once  cursing  Aditi.  The  ever  increas- 
ing power  of  Asuras  made  the  Devas  anxious.  Aditi, 
the  mother  of  the  Devas  decided  to  send  them  all  to 
annihilate  the  Asuras.  She  had  finished  cooking  food 
for  her  sons,  and  lo  !  there  appeared  before  her  Budha 
and  asked  for  food.  Aditi  asked  him  to  wait  pending 
her  sons  taking  their  food  hoping  that  there  would  be 
some  food  left  after  that.  This  caused  Budha  to  lose 
his  temper  and  he  cursed  her  that  (Aditi)  she  would 
become  the  mother  of  Vivasvan  in  his  second  birth 
as  Anda,  when  she  would  suffer  pain  in  her  abdomen. 
(M.B.  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  34,  Verses  96-98). 

7.  Former  birth  of  Aditi.  During  the  former  years 
(period)  of  Svayambhuva  Manu  the  Prajapati  called 
Sutapas,  along  with  his  wife  Prsni  did  Tapas  for 
12000  years.  Then  Mahavisnu  appeared  before  them, 
and  Prsni  prayed  for  a  son  like  Visnu  himself,  and 
Mahavisnu  was  born  as  her  son  named  Prsnigarbha. 
This  story  is  related  by  Sri  Krsna  to  his  mother  on 
his  birth  as  the  son  of  Vasudeva.  (Bhagavata,  Dasama 
Skandha,  Chapter  3). 

She,  who  became  the  wife  of  Prajapati  as  Prsni  before 
Svayambhuva  Manu,  and  was  born  again  as  DevakI, 
the  wife  of  Vasudeva  is  one  and  the  same  person. 

ADRA.  A  King  of  the  Solar  dynasty.  (See  Surya 
Vamsa ) . 

ADRI  was  a  King,  the  son  of  Visvagasva  and  father 
of  Yuvanasva.  (M.B.  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  202, 
Verse  3). 

ADRIKA.  A  nymph  (devastrl).  There  is  a  story  in 
Devlbhagavata  about  her  being  cursed  by  a  Brahmin 
and  turned  into  a  fish. 

ADRSTABHAYA  is  the  curse  put  on  King  Janamejaya 
by  Sarama,  the  dog  of  the  Devas.  While  Janamejaya, 
son  of  Pariksit  was  conducting,  along  with  his  bro- 
thers, a  yaga  of  long  duration  at  Kuruksetra  the  son 
of  Sarama  went  to  the  place  and  was  thrashed  by 
the  brothers  of  Janamejaya.  Seeing  her  weeping  child 
Sarama  naturally  got  angry.  She  cursed  the  king 
thus  :  "My  son  did  not  commit  any  offence;  he  did 
not  even  look  at  the  havis  (oblations),  nor  did  he 
lick  it.  For  having  thrashed  the  innocent  child  you 
will  experience  Adrstabhaya.  When  the  yaga  was 
over  Janamejaya  got  rid  of  the  curse  by  getting  sage 
Somasravas  do  certain  proper  rites. 

ADRSYANTI,  wife  of  sage  Sakti,  the  son  of  Vasistha 
and  mother  of  sage  Parasara. 

Kalmasapada,  a  king  of  the  Iksvaku  dynasty  reached 
the  hermitage  of  Vasistha  during  a  hunting  expedi- 
tion when  Sakti,  eldest  of  the  hundred  sons  of 
Vasistha  came  walking  towards  him.  False  pride 
prevented  either  of  them  from  giving  way  to  the 
other.  The  King  got  angry  and  whipped  Sakti.  Sakti 
cursed  the  king  and  he  was  converted  into  a  demon. 
This  happened  at  a  period  when  sages  Vasistha  and 
Vi^vamitra  were  at  logger-heads.  Visvamitra  got 
admitted  into  the  body  of  King  Kalmasapada  a 
demon  called  Kimkara,  and  the  king  set  out  to  take 
revenge  upon  Sakti,  the  son  of  Vasistha.  The  King 
was  further  promised  all  support  by  Vi'svamitra. 
Kalmasapada  ate  up  all  the  hundred  sons  of  Vasistha. 
Overcome  with  grief  Vasistha  attempted  suicide 
many  a  time.  But  the  spirit  (Atman)  did  not  quit 
the  body.  Thus  sunken  in  grief  Vasistha  lived  in  his 
hermitage  with  Adrsyanti,  wife  of  Sakti.  One  day 
Vasistha  heard  distinct  sounds  of  the  chanting  of 
the  Vedas  and  Adrsyanti  told  him  that  a  child  of 
his  son,  Sakti,  was  developing  in  her  womb  and  that 
the  vedic  sounds  heard  were  sounds  produced  by 
that  son  chanting  the  vedic  hymns.  Vasistha  thus 
was  happy  to  hear  that  the  dynasty  will  not  become 
extinct  and,  so,  gave  up  all  ideas  of  suicide.  Another 
day  Kalmasapada  in  the  guise  of  the  demon  hurriedly 
came  to  devour  Adrsyanti  and  Vasistha  gave  him 
redemption  from  the  curse.  He  was  restored  to  his 
old  state  and  form.  Adrsyanti  duly  gave  birth  to  a 
son,  and  the  child  grew  up  to  become  Parasara, 
father  of  Vyasa. 

While  the  Pandavas,  in  the  course  of  their  forest 
life,  were  passing  the  banks  of  river  Ganga  at  midnight, 
a  Gandharva  named  Arhgaraparna  enjoying  in  the 
river-water  clashed  with  Arjuna,  and  he  was  defeat- 
ed. The  story  of  Adrsyanti  is  one  of  the  many 
stories  told  by  Arhgaraparna  to  the  Pandavas.  (M.'B. 
Adi  Parva,  Chapters  175-178). 


1 )  Genealogy.    Descended   from  Visnu     in   this  order 

2)  Birth.     A   story    occurs    in     Uttara-Rama-Carita 
about  the  birth  of  Agastya.  Nimi    was  the  son  of  Iks- 
vaku of  the    Surya    dynasty.  When  he  ascended  the 
throne  he  decided     to    celebrate  a    sacrifice  of  long 
duration.    He  invited  Vasistha  to  perform  the  sacrifice. 
But  Vasisfha,  who    had  to  participate  in   the  sacrifice 



of  Indra,  could  not  accept  the  invitation  and  Nimi 
had  to  return  disappointed.  At  this  he  got  angry, 
sought  the  help  of  Satananda,  the  son  of  the  great 
hermit  Gautama  and  the  sacrifice  was  begun.  Vasistha 
did  not  like  this.  He  cursed  Nimi  that  life  might  be 
separated  from  his  body.  Nimi  retorted  with  the  same 
curse.  Vasistha's  spirit  separated  itself  from  his  body 
and  began  to  roam  about  in  the  sky.  At  last  he  re- 
quested Brahma  to  provide  him  with  a  body.  Brahma 
granted  his  wish  and  said  that  he  would  be  born  again 
from  Mitra  and  Varuna. 

When  the  spirit  of  Vasistha  returned  to  the  earth  it 
was  Mitra  and  Varuna  moving  about,  having  only  one 
body  for  both.  Vasistha's  spirit  entered  into  that  body. 
One  day  Mitra-Varuna  happened  to  see  the  celestial 
beauty,  Urvasi  on  the  seashore.  They  embraced  Urvasi 
and  immediately  the  spirit  of  Vasistha  entered  the 
body  of  Urvasi. 

After  this  Mitra  and  Varuna  separated  themselves 
from  one  another  and  assumed  two  different  bodies. 
Varuna  approached  Urvasi  with  lustful  desire,  but 
rejecting  him  Urva:';i  accepted  Mitra.  Varuna  had 
seminal  flow  and  this  semen  was  taken  and  kept  in  a 
pot.  At  the  sight  of  this,  remorse  and  passion  arose 
in  Urvasi  and  the  semen  of  Mitra  already  received 
in  her  womb  oozed  out  and  fell  on  the  ground.  This 
also  was  collected  and  kept  in  the  same  pot  along  with 
that  of  Varuna.  After  a  few  days  the  pot  broke  open 
by  itself  and  two  babies  came  out.  One  was  Agastya 
and  the  other  Vasistha.  As  these  two  were  born  of  the 
semen  of  Mitra  and  Varuna,  they  came  to  be  known 
as  Maitravarunis  later.  This  story  partly  occurs  in  Sand 
Parva  of  Maha'bharata,  Verse  343  of  Chapter  88. 

3 )  Education.  Very  little  is  mentioned  in    the  Puranas 
about    the   education   of  Agastya.  Still  there  are  am- 
ple proofs  that  he    was  well-versed  in  the  Vedas  and 
sciences  and  well  skilled  in  the  uses  of  diverse  weapons. 
In  Verse  9,  Chapter  139  of  Mahabharata,    Adi  Parva, 
Drona  says    to  Arjuna    as    follows: 

"Agnivesa,  my  teacher  was  the  disciple  of  Agastya,  in  the 
art  of  using  bows  and  arrows  and  I  am  his  disciple". 
When  it  is   said    that   even   Agnivesa   the    teacher  of 
Drona  was  a  disciple  of  Agastya,  his  proficiency  in  the 
art  of  using  weapons  could  easily  be  discerned. 

4)  Marriage.  There  is  an  interesting  story  behind  the 
marriage  of  such  an  austere  man  as  Agastya,  who  had 
brought  all  the  passions  under  control.  As  the  hermit 
Agastya    was    walking  along   the   forest,     he   saw   his 
ancestors  (Pitrs)  hanging  head  downwards  in  a  canyon. 
He    wanted  to     know   the  reason  and   they  replied  : 
"Child;  we  would  be  allowed   to  enter  heaven  only 
if  sons   are    born  to    you.  So    get  married  as  soon  as 
possible".  The  necessity  of  marriage  occurred  to  him 
only  then.  But  will  there  be  any  woman  who  could  be 
patient  enough  to    become  the    wife  of   this  bearded 
dwarfish  hermit  ?  Agastya  did  not  lose  heart.  At  that 
time  the  King    of    Vidarbha    was  doing   penance   to 
obtain  a  son.    Agastya  collected   the   quintessence   of 
all   living   beings,    with   which   he   created   an   extre- 
mely  beautiful     lady     and     named    her    Lopamudra. 
Agastya  gave  Lopamudra  as  daughter    to  the  King  of 
Vidarbha.    The    King    who  was  delighted  at  getting 
such  a  daughter,  employed  hundreds  of  maids  to  look 
after  the  child,  who  soon  grew  up  to  be  a  young  lady. 
Agastya    once    approached    the    King    of    Vidarbha 

and  expressed  his  wish  to  have  Lopamudra  as  his 
wife.  The  King  was  in  a  dilemma.  On  the  one  hand 
he  did  not  like  his  beautiful  daughter  having  the 
brightness  of  fire,  to  be  given  as  wife  to  the  hermit, 
clad  in  the  bark  of  trees  and  wearing  tufts  of  matted 
hair.  On  the  other  hand  he  was  afraid  of  the  curse 
of  the  hermit  Agastya.  As  the  King  was  trying  hard 
to  find  a  solution,  Lopamudra  herself  came  to  the 
King  and  said  "Father,  I  am  happy  to  say  that  I  shall 
willingly  become  the  wife  of  the  hermit  Agastya."  At 
last  her  father  consented  and  discarding  royal  garments 
and  ornaments,  Lopamudra  accompanied  Agastya. 
It  is  mentioned  in  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  130,  Verse  5, 
that  they  were  married  at  Mahasindhutirtha.  After 
their  marriage  they  went  to  Garigadvara.  (Maha- 
bharata, Vana  Parva,  Chapter  96). 
5 )  The  story  of  how  Agastya  ate  Vdtdpi.  While  Agastya 
was  doing  severe  penance,  Lopamudra  attained 
puberty  and  had  menstruation.  Longing  for  a  child, 
she  went  and  stood  beside  Agastya.  She  expressed 
her  wish  to  lead  a  family  life.  Her  demands  did 
not  stop  there.  During  conjugation,  Agastya  should 
wear  flower  garlands  and  ornaments,  and  she  must 
be  provided  with  divine  ornaments.  Agastya  was 
surprised  at  the  enormity  of  her  demands.  Poor,  penni- 
less Agastya  !  Leaving  Lopamudra  in  the  hermitage 
he  went  in  search  of  money.  He  at  first  approached 
King  Srutarva,  who  produced  accounts  of  his  in- 
come and  expenditure  and  convinced  Agastya  that 
he  was  having  no  balance  at  all.  Agastya,  accompa- 
nied by  Srutarva,  then  proceeded  to  King  Bradh- 
nasVa.  He  also  produced  accounts  and  refused  to  help 
Agastya,  who  then  followed  by  Srutarva  and  Bradh- 
nasva  went  on  to  the  wealthy  King  Trasadasyu, 
who  also  producing  his  accounts  refused  to  render 
any  help  to  Agastya.  Finally  Agastya  accompanied 
by  the  three  Kings,  went  to  the  house  of  Ilvala,  a 
noble  asura  of  immense  wealth. 

This  asura  Ilvala  lived  in  Manimatpattana  with  his 
younger  brother  Vatapi.  Once  Ilvala  approached 
a  hermit  Brahmin  and  requested  that  his  wish  for 
a  son,  having  the  power  and  status  of  Indra,  be  grant- 
ed. The  Brahmin  refused  to  grant  such  a  boon. 
Since  then  Ilvala  and  Vatapi  considered  Brahmins 
as  their  enemies.  The  elder  brother  converted  the 
younger  one  (Vatapi)  into  a  goat  and  whenever  a 
Brahmin  visited  his  house,  he  would  kill  the  goat, 
prepare  mutton  dishes  and  set  them  before  his 
guest.  When  he  had  finished  eating,  Ilvala  would  call 
aloud.  "Vatapi,  come  out".  Breaking  the  stomach 
of  the  guest  open,  Vatapi  would  come  out.  In  this  way 
Ilvala  had  killed  a  good  number  of  Brahmins.  It  was 
at  this  juncture  that  Agastya  and  the  Kings  came  to 
beg  money  of  him. 

Ilvala  welcomed  the  guests  with  hospitality  and  as 
usual  killed  the  goat,  prepared  food  with  it  and  served 
the  food  before  Agastya.  When  Agastya  had  finished 
eating,  Ilvala  called  Vatapi  loudly.  But  Agastya  slowly 
said,  "Vatapi,  jirno  bhava"  (Let  Vatapi  be  digested) 
and  immediately  Vatapi  was  digested  in  the  stomach 
of  Agastya.  The  awe-stricken  asura  Ilvala  gave  each 
Brahmin  ten  thousand  cows  and  as  much  gold  and 
to  Agastya  he  doubled  the  quantity  of  alms.  Over 
and  above  this,  he  presented  Agastya  with  a  chariot 
hitched  with  two  fine  horses  called  Viravan  and 


Suravan.  Agastya  returned  to  his  hermitage  and 
adorned  himself  as  Lopamudra  had  demanded.  (Maha- 
bharata,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  99). 

6)  Birth  of    a     son.     Lopamudra     became  pregnant. 
Agastya    told    her,    "A     thousand    ordinary    sons,  or 
hundred  sons,  each  having  the  strength  of  ten  ordinary 
sons,  or  ten  sons,  each  having  the  strength  of  hundred 
ordinary  sons,  or  a  son,  greater  and  nobler   than    one 
thousand     sons — which    of   these    do    you    prefer  ?" 
Lopamudra  preferred    one    son.  When  she    was    with 
child  Agastya  again  went  to  the    forest  to  do  penance. 
After    seven     years    of    pregnancy    Lopamudra  gave 
birth  to  a  lustrous  son.  The  hermit  Drdhasyu,  who  is 
also  called  Idhmavaha,    is  this  son.  This  child  is  said 
to  have  chanted   the  Vedas     (Holy    Scriptures)     im- 
mediately   on    his    birth.  He    used  to  gather  twigs  for 
kindling  the  sacrificial  fire  of  his  father,  and  hence  he 
got  the  name  Idhmavaha.* 

7)  How  he  stamped  the  Vindhya  mountain  down.  Once  the 
talebearer  Narada  happened  to  come  to  the    Vindhya 
Mountain,  who  gladly  welcomed  Narada,    gave  him  a 
seat,  showed  hospitality  and  asked  for  news.  Narada  said 
"May  you  be  blessed.  Just  now  I  am  coming  from  the 
Mahameru.    Indra,    Agni    (fire)    and   other  gods   live 
there.  Kailasa,  Nisadha,  Nila,  Gandhamadana  etc.   are 
mountains  far  nobler  than   this  Meru.    But    they  are 
not  so  haughty  as  him.  That  the  Sun  and  the   Moon 
and  such  others  revolve  round  him,  is  the  reason   for  his 
arrogance".  On  hearing  these  tales,    Vindhya   thought 
that   Meru    should  be  taught  a  lesson.  Once  Vindhya 
made  his  peaks  grow  higher  and  higher  till  they  touched 
the  sky.  The  Sun,  the  Moon  and  others  found  it  very 
difficult  to  pass  over  the  high  peaks  in  their    usual  jour- 
neys to  the  West,  and  so  they   had  to  roam   about  in 
the  sky.  When  the  journeys  of  the  Sun  and  the  Moon 
were  hindered,  everything  in  the   world  fell  into  chaos. 
The  gods    came  to  Vindhya   in   groups   and    tried   to 
pacify   him.  But    their   attempts  were   futile.  So    they 
approached  Agastya  and  made  their  petition  to  him. 
He  agreed  to  pacify  Vindhya  somehow  or  other.  Agas- 
tya and  his    wife    came  to  Vindhya    from   Kasinagara. 
When  Vindhya  saw  Agastya  he  began  to  shiver    with 
fear.  Contracting    all    his  high  peaks,  he  bowed  before 
Agastya,  who  said  to  Vindhya   thus    "Vindhya,    I    am 
going  to  South   Bharata.  Let  your  heads  be  low  till  I 
come  back".  Vindhya  agreed.  Agastya    passed    on    to 
the  South  and  built  a  hermitage  in  the  Malayacala  and 
lived   there.  Since   then  Agastya   had   never    gone   to 
the   North  and  Vindhya  had  never  risen  up.  As  he  had 
made  the  mountain    (Aga)    bow  its    head  he  got    the 
name  Agastya.    (Tenth  Skandha  of  Devibhagavata). 
8)    Nahusa    transformed   to   a   huge    serpent  by     Agastya. 
Devendra   killed    Vrttrasura,    an   enemy    of  the  gods. 
As  Devendra  had  resorted   to  treachery  for  killing  the 
enemy  (see   the   word  Vrttrasura)  he  incurred  the  sin 
of  'Brahmahatya'.  Once  Indra  went  to  the  Manasasaras, 
without  the  knowledge  of  anybody  and  hid    himself  in 
the  petal  of  a  lotus   flower.  The  gods    and  especially 
Sacidevi  were   much   alarmed   at  the  disappearance  of 
Devendra.    Heaven   was    without   a  King.    Bad  omens 
began  to   appear.  Indra,   who  had  hidden  in  the  lotus 
stalk  in  the  shape  of  a  water-snake,  was  not  at  all  visible 


as  the  petals  had  closed  over  him.  It  was  at  this  critical 
moment  that  King  Nahusa  had  completed  hundred 
horse-sacrifices  and  became  eligible  for  the  throne  of 
Devendra.  At  a  great  gathering  of  the  Gods  Nahusa 
was  elected  as  Devendra.  Though  Nahusa  got  all  the 
celestial  maids  at  his  disposal  in  the  Nandanodyana 
(Nandana  Garden)  his  passion  for  women  was  not 
satiated.  So  he  began  to  have  an  eye  on  Indrarri.  She 
was  in  sorrow  and  misery  at  the  disappearance  of  her 
husband  Indra,  and  did  not  at  all  look  with  favour  on 
this  new  move  on  the  part  of  the  new  Indra.  She  sought 
the  help  of  Brhaspati,  who  agreed  to  protect  her 
from  Nahusa.  The  newly-elected  Indra  could  not  tole- 
rate this  disloyalty  on  the  part  of  Indram.  He  became 
furious  and  threatened  Brhaspati  with  death,  if  IndranI 
was  not  sent  to  him  forthwith.  All  hermits  gathered 
round  Nahusa  and  tried  with  their  advice  to  dissuade 
him  from  this  attempt,  but  he  would  not  be  dissuaded. 
Nahusa  belittled  Brhaspati  and  all  the  hermits  and  was 
rude  to  them.  Finally  the  hermits,  being  afraid  of 
Nahusa,  went  to  Brhaspati  to  persuade  him  to  send 
Indram  to  Nahusa.  Brhaspati  suggested  to  Indram  a 
way  of  safety.  Accordingly  she  came  to  Nahusa  and  said 
to  him  "Lord,  to  become  your  wife,  is  a  matter  of  great 
pleasure  to  me.  But  before  that  I  must  make  sure  if 
my  husband  is  living  anywhere.  So  allow  me  to  make  a 
search".  Nahusa  agreed  to  this  and  by  the  blessings 
of  Devi,  Indram  found  out  her  husband.  But  Indra 
would  not  return  to  the  court,  with  Indram,  who 
then  complained  about  Nahusa's  outrageous  behaviour. 
Indra  advised  her  a  new  way  to  protect  herself  from 
Nahusa's  onslaught. 

Indram  returned  to  Nahusa  and  told  him  "Lord,  wo- 
men generally  love  pomp  and  glory.  I  have  a  mania 
for  vehicles.  You  should  make  a  palanquin.  Let  the 
palanquin  bearers  be  hermits.  You  must  come  to  my 
house  in  that  palanquin  with  hermits  as  your  palanquin 
bearers  and  then  I  will  accept  you  as  my  husband." 
Nahusa  agreed.  He  employed  Agastya  and  such  other 
hermits  to  bear  his  palanquin.  He  got  into  his  palan- 
quin and  started  for  Indrani's  house.  His  desire  to 
reach  was  such  that  he  thought  the  hermits  to 
be  very  slow.  To  make  them  quick  enough  he  ordered 
"Sarpa,  Sarpa"  (walk  quick,  walk  quick).  The  hermits 
began  to  run.  Still  Nahusa  was  not  satisfied.  He  kicked 
at  the  heads  of  the  hermits  and  whipped  the  dwarfish 

Agastya  got  angry  and  cursed  Nahusa  thus:  "Since 
you  have  whipped  me  saying  'Sarpa  Sarpa',  may  you 
be  transformed  into  a  mahasarpa  (huge  serpent)  and 
fall  into  the  great  forest."** 

The  horror-stricken  Nahusa  pleased  Agastya  by  praise. 
Agastya  said  that  Nahusa  would  be  freed  from  the 
curse  and  attain  heaven  when  he  happened  to  meet 
Dharmaputra.  Nahusa  instantly  changed  into  a 
serpent  of  immense  size  and  slided  into  a  great  forest 
in  the  Himalayas.  (Devibhagavata,  8th  Sarga). 
During  their  sojourn  in  the  forest,  the  Pandavas 
visited  many  holy  places  and  reached  the  Yamuna 
mountain  in  the  Himalayas.  When  Bhlma  was  passing 
by  the  mouth  of  a  cave  he  was  attacked  by  a  huge 
serpent.  In  spite  of  his  immense  strength  Bhlma  could 

*  Idhma— twigs  of  firewood.   (Idhma= twigs  of  firewood)    (vaha^  carrier). 

'* It  is  mentioned   in   the    Mahabharata,  Anusasana  Parva,     Chapter    100,   that     the  person   who   cursed    Nahusa   and  turned  him 
into  a  huge  serpent,  was  the  hermit  Bhrgu,  who  had  been  hiding  in  the   hair  of  Agastya. 



not  extricate  himself  from  the  hold  of  the  snake,  who 
eventually  informed  Bhlma  of  its  previous  history. 
When  Bhima  understood  that  the  serpent  was  none 
other  than  Nahusa,  a  King  of  the  Surya  dynasty 
(Solar),  he  felt  sorry  for  him.  Dharmaputra,  who 
came  there  in  search  of  Bhima,  talked  with  Nahusa, 
who  immediately  regained  his  original  form  arid 
went  to  heaven.  (Mahabharata,  Chapter  17  of 
Udyoga  Parva;  Chapter  179  of  Vana  Parva;  Chapter 
342  of  Santi  Parva). 

9)  How     Agastya    drank  up    the  ocean.    Indra  ruthlessly 
killed  Vrttrasura,  who  had   been    harassing  the  Gods, 
with  the  help  of  the  Kalakeyas.  The  frightened  Kala- 
keyas  got  into    the  ocean    and  hid  themselves  at  the 
bottom.  From  that  hideout  they  decided  to    destroy 
the  three    worlds.    At    night    they    came  out  on    the 
earth  and  ate  a  good  deal    of  Brahmins,    and  caused 
much  damage    to    the    hermitages     of    Vasistba  and 
Cyavana.  All  the  Brahmins  on  the  earth  were  terribly 
afraid    of    the    Kalakeyas.     The  gods  went  to  Visnu 
and  prayed  for  protection.  Visnu  informed  them  that 
the  Kalakeyas  could   not  be  caught  unless  the  ocean 
was  dried  up,  and  this  task  could  be  performed    only 
by  Agastya.  So  the  Gods  approached  Agastya  and  told 
him  what  Visnu  had    informed    them.  With  pleasure 
Agastya    accepted  the  job.  Accompanied  by  the  Gods 
and  hermits  he  neared  the  swaying  and  surging  ocean. 
While  all  were  watching  unwinkingly  Agastya  brought 
the  great  ocean    into    his    palm  and  drank  it  up  very 
easily  and    subsequently    the    Kalakeyas    were   killed. 
Now  the  Gods   again   approached   Visnu    and   made 
representation  about  the  loss  of  the  ocean.  Visnu  told 
them    that    by    the  penance  of  Bhaglratha  the  divine 
Ganga  would  fall  into  the    earth  and    then   the  ocean 
will  be  filled.  In    this  way    the  earth  regained  its  lost 
ocean.     (Mahabharata,  Vana  Parva,  Chapters   101   to 

10)  Agastya    cursing  Kubera  and  his  companion.  In  the 
course     of    their    sojourn    in    forest,     the     Pandavas 
visited  several  holy  places  and   reached  the    proximity 
of   the    Himalayas.    Leaving     his    brothers     behind, 
Arjuna    went    up    the    Mahameru    to    worship    Siva. 
Years    passed    by.  At  last    his    brothers     also  started 
for  the    Mahameru  in    search    of  Arjuna    and    with 
the  help  of  the  hermits  Vrsaparva  and  Arstisena,  they 
reached  Kuberapurl  (the  capital  of    Kubera).  There 
Bhima    destroyed    the    army  of    Kubera     and    killed 
Maniman,    his     friend    and    favourite.    Dharmaputra, 
repenting    of   his    younger    brother's    iniquity  bowed 
before  Kubera  and  asked  him  with  politeness,  why  the 
power  of  Gods  gave  way  to  the  power  of  man.  Kubera 
replied  that  it  was  due  to   the  curse  of  Agastya  and 
began    to   depict  the    event    thus  :   Once    my    friend 
Maniman  and  myself  were  going,  in  a  chariot,   to  be 
present  at  the    singing  and    chanting  just    begun    at 
Kusavatl.  At  that  time  Agastya  was  standing    in  his 
hermitage   on    the   bank   of  Kalindl,    performing  Sun 
worship.  When  Maniman  saw  this    from  the  sky,    he 
spat  on  the  head  of  Agastya,  who  instantly  getting  wild 
cursed    me.     "Lo,     Kubera,     your     friend    Maniman 
spat  on  my  head  in  your  sight.  So  this  Maniman  and 
your  army    will  meet  with  death   at    a    man's   hand. 
When  they  die  you  should  not  feel   sorry  for  them.  If 
it   becomes  possible  for     you     to  meet  the  man  who 
killed  Maniman  you  will  be  liberated  from  the  curse." 

It  is  this  curse  that  brought  about  the  death  of 
Maniman  and  the  army.  When  Kubera  saw  Bhima 
face  to  face  his  curse  was  revoked.  (Mahabharata, 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  160). 

11)  Agastya   cursing   Marica    and     Tadaka.    The  boys 
Rama   and  Laksmana  went  to   the   forest  with  Visva- 
mitra   for   protecting  sacrifice.  When  they  entered  the 
Tadaka   forest     Visvamitra    told    them    the    story  of 
Tadaka  thus: — 

Tadaka  is  the  daughter  of  Suketu,  a  semi  god  of  the 
tribe  Yaksa.  Being  childless  for  a  long  time  Suketu  was 
miserable  and  began  to  do  penance  before  Brahma, 
who  blessed  him  and  granted  his  wish  and  a  daughter 
was  born  to  him.  This  daughter  was  named  Tadaka. 
Brahma  blessed  her,  giving  her  the  strength  of  one 
thousand  elephants.  Tadaka  grew  up  and  became  a 
young  woman.  Suketu  gave  her  in  marriage  to  Sunda, 
son  of  Iharjha.  Tadaka  gave  birth  to  a  son  called 
Marica.  When  Sunda  was  killed,  Tadaka  got  wild 
and  ran  into  the  hermitage  of  Agastya  causing  much 
havoc  there.  At  this  Agastya  got  angry  and  cursed 
her  to  become  a  RaksasI  (giantess)  and  instantly 
the  bodies  of  Tadaka  and  Marica  were  deformed. 
Tadaka  could  not  control  her  anger  and  she  demo- 
lished the  hermitage  of  Agastya.  (Valmlki  Ramayana, 

12)  The    story    of    the     theft    of  lotus.  Once     Bhrgu, 
Vasistha  and  other-  hermits     went  on    a  pilgrimage, 
with     Indra    as    their     leader.     On     the     way  they 
reached  Brahmasaras,  in  the  holy  place     of    Kausikl. 
Agastya  had  grown    some  lotus    flowers    there.    The 
pilgrims  plucked   stealthily    all    the  lotus  flowers  nur- 
tured by  Agastya   and  ate  them.  The  furious  Agastya 
got  into  the  midst  of  the  hermits  in    search     of  the 
culprit.  None  admitted    the  theft.  Finally  he   caught 
hold  of  Indra,   as  the  thief.  Indra    said    "O,     Lord, 
had  it  not  been  for  my    eagerness    to   hear  discourses 
on    duty    from    your  face,   I   would  not  have  stolen 
your  lotus  flowers."  Saying   thus   Indra   returned  the 
lotus  flowers.  Agastya    was    pleased    and    let    Indra 
and    the    hermits   depart   in    peace.     (Mahabharata, 
Anusasana  Parva,   Chapter  94). 

13)  How  Agastya   burned  the    Asuras    (demons).      (This 
story  occurs  in  the   Mahabharata  as,  having  been  told 
by  the  God    Vayu     to    Bhlsma  as  a  discourse  on  the 
greatness  of    Agastya,    and   Bhlsma  reiterating   it    to 

Once  the  Gods  had  to  accept  defeat  at  the  hands  of 
the  Asuras  (Demons)  and  they  approached  Agastya 
and  said  thus  :  Oh,  hermit,  since  we  have  been  defeat- 
ed by  the  Asuras,  our  prosperity  is  at  an  end.  There 
is  none  to  help  us  but  you."  Hearing  this  Agastya 
became  angry  and  began  to  burn  the  Asuras  to  death, 
by  the  merits  of  his  penance.  Many  of  them  fell  down 
on  the  earth  and  some  fell  into  Patala  (the  nether  world) . 
The  asuras  who  thus  fell  were  not  killed  by  Agas- 
tya. Thus  the  menace  of  the  Asuras  in  heaven  was 
warded  off,  and  the  Gods  lived  in  peace  and  prosperity. 
(Mahabharata,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  155,  Verses 
1  to  13). 

14)  Indra' s  conflict  with   Agastya.    Once    Agastya    com- 
menced   a    sacrifice    of  twelve  years'  duration.    Many 
hermits  participated  in  this  sacrifice.  No    sooner    had 
the  hermit  begun  the  sacrifice,  than  Indra,  (the  God  of 
Thunder  and  Rain)  stopped  rain   in   the  world.  Crops 



could  not  be  raised.  But  Agastya  provided  everybody 
who  took  part  in  the  sacrifice,  with  sumptuous  meals. 
The  hermits  wondered  how  Agastya  could  do  this.  Some 
of  the  hermits  feared  that  the  sacrifice  would  have  to  be 
stopped  before  the  stipulated  time,  if  the  drought  con- 
tinued. Agastya  told  them  not  to  fear,  and  that  if 
Indra  refused  to  send  rain,  he  himself  would  become 
Indra  and  protect  the  subjects.  Indra  was  horrified, 
when  he  heard  this  and  he  began  to  send  rain  regu- 
larly. (Mahabharata,  As'vamedhika  Parva,  Chapter 


15)  Story  of  Gajendramokfa   (The  redemption  of  an  elephant) . 
In  the   Bharata    a    story  occurs,     as    to  how    Agastya 
cursed  King  Indradyumna,  and  turned  him  to  an   ele- 
phant. While    Indradyumna,  the  King  of  Pandya   was 
absorbed  in  deep  meditation  on  Visnu,  Agastya  reach- 
ed  the  palace.  Being  immersed  in  meditation  the  King 
failed  to  notice     the  arrival  of  the  great    hermit,  who 
getting  angry  with  the  King,  cursed  him  to  become  an 
elephant,  for  one  thousand  years.   Instantly    the    King 
was  deformed  into  a  big  tusker  and  quitting  the  palace 
it  went  to  a  big  forest  and  lived  there   happily  with    the 
she-elephants  there.  At  that  time  a  hermit   named    De- 
vala  was  doing  penance  in  that  forest.  One  day  Huhu, 
a  gandharva  (a  class  of  semi-gods)  enjoying  the  com- 
pany of  some  celestial  maids  came  to  the  place  where 
Devala   had  put   up   his   hermitage.  The  hermit     saw 
the    Gandharva  and  the  maids  playing  and  bathing  in 
the  pond  in  front  of  his  hermitage  in  complete  nudity. 
Getting  angry   Devala    cursed  Huhu    and  he  was  de- 
formed into  a  crocodile.  This  pond  which  was  in  the 
Trikuta  Mountain  was   thus  under   the  suzerainty    of 
the  crocodile.  The  tusker     (Indradyumna)  entered  the 
pond  to  drink  water.  The  crocodile  caught  hold  of  the 
leg  of  the  elephant.    Each  tried  to  pull  the  other    with 
equal  force.  This    fight    is  said  to  have  lasted    for    a 
thousand  years.  When  both  were  tired,   godly  feelings 
began  to  dawn  in  their  minds.     Then,    riding  on    an 
eagle    Mahavisnu  appeared  before     them,    cut    them 
asunder  with   his     Cakrayudha     (the    wheel-weapon) 
and  both    were    given    deliverance.     (Bhagavata,    8th 
Skandha,    Chapter    2). 

16)  Agastya  teaching    Sri  Rama  the  Aditya-hrdaya  Mantra 
(A  hymn  in  praise  of  the     Sun).  When  Sri    Rama    was 
fighting  with  Havana  in  Lanka,  dejection  befell    him, 
his  heart  being   weighed  down  with    faintness,    for    a 
little  while.  Havana  made  the  best  use  of  this  oppor- 
tunity and  began  to  advance.  The  gods  had  gathered 
in  the  sky  above  to  witness  the  fight.  Agastya,  at  that 
particular  moment,  taught  Sri  Rama  the  Aditya-hrdaya 
Mantra,  a  hymn  in  praise  of  the  Sun-god  and  when 
Sri  Rama  chanted  that  mantra,  he  resumed  fight  with 
Vigour  and  Ravana  was  defeated  and    slain.    (Valmiki 

Ramayana,  Yuddha  Kanda,  Sarga  107). 

17)  How  the  slant  of    the    earth  was  rectified  by    seating 
Agastya.  The    matrimonial   ceremony   of  Sri   Parames- 
vara    and   Parvati  was   held  in   the   Himalayas.    On 
that  auspicious  occasion  all  the  living    beings    of  the 
world  were    present,    and    as    a  result  the  Himalayan 
region  sank  down  and  the  earth  slanted  to  that  side. 
To    keep    the    equilibrium    of  the    earth,   Siva    sent 
Agastya  to   the   south.    Accordingly   Agastya   reached 
Kuttalam,   where  there  was    a    temple    dedicated  to 
the  worship  of    Visnu.    Agastya    had    besmeared    his 
forehead    with  ashes    and    so  admission  to  the  temple 


was  denied  to  him,  by  the  devotees  there  who  were 
Vaisnavites.  By  his  own  power  Agastya  turned  him- 
self into  a  vaisnavite  and  got  into  the  temple,  and 
immediately  the  image  of  Visnu  in  the  temple  chang- 
ed by  itself  into  a  Sivalinga (idol  representing  Siva). 
Since  then  the  temple  at  Kuttalam  has  remained  a 
temple  of  Siva.  Agastya  proceeded  to  the  southern- 
most point  of  the  earth  and  sat  there  and  because  of 
his  weight  the  earth  regained  its  normal  position. 
(Skanda  Purana). 

18)  Agastya  and  the  Kraunca  Mountain.  When  Agastya 
passed  the    Vindhya  mountain  and  proceeded  to  the 
South  a  Raksasa    (giant)     called    Kraunca   hindered 
his   way.  By   his   power   the    Raksasa    caused    to  fall 
everywhere  a    very    heavy  rain.  Agastya   sprinkled    a 
few    drops   of  water  from   his  waterpot   on   Kraunca, 
who   instantly  became  a    mountain.    Telling  him  that 
he  would    get    deliverance    from    the  curse  when  the 
weapon  of  Subrahmanya  struck  him,  Agastya  continu- 
ed his  journey  to  the  South.    (Skanda  Purana.). 

19)  Agastya  and  the    River    Kaveri.     Once  Surapadma, 
an  Asura   (demon)  drove  the   Gods  out    from  heaven. 
Indra  came  to  Siyali  a  place  in  the  district  of  Tanjavur 
(Tanjore)    and   began   to  do  penance  to  please  Siva. 
Rain  was    completely    stopped.    Agastya    had    com- 
pressed   the  river    Kaveri    and  held  the    water  in  his 
waterpot.    Ganapati    having    come    to    know  of  this, 
came  in  the  form  of  a  crow  and  toppled  the  water- 
pot.  Agastya  got  angry  and  ran  after  the  crow,  which 
immediately  assumed  the  form  of  a  boy.  Agastya  caught 
hold  of  him.    The  boy    instantly    revealed  himself  as 
Subrahmanya   and   granted   Agastya  a    boon.    "Your 
waterpot  will  always    be    full".    Since  then  there    had 
never  been  shortage  of  water  in  the  Kaveri.    (Skanda 

20)  Agastya  in  the  palace  of  Bhadrdsva.  Once  Agastya 
lived    in    the    palace    of   Bhadrasva  as  his  guest    for 
seven    days.  Agastya    praised    Kantimati    the    queen 
on  several  occasions.  The  King  wanted  to  know    the 
reason.    Agastya      said  :  During    her     previous    birth 
Kantimati   was   the     handmaid     of  a  rich  man.  On 
one  occasion     of   dvadasi     (twelfth    night    after  full 
moon)   in  the  month  of  Tula   (second  half    of   Octo- 
ber   and    first  half  of    November)   the  rich  man  had 
asked  his     handmaid   to  see   that  the  lights  in  a  cer- 
tain temple  did  not  go  out  and  she  did  so,    in  conse- 
quence of    which,     during  her  current  birth  she  has 
become    your    queen,    bearing    the  name  Kantimati. 
The  King  and  the  queen  were    much  pleased   at    this 
explanation     of     Agastya     and     thenceforward    they 
began    to  observe  dvadasi  as  a  day  of  fasting.    (Vayu 

2 1 )  Agastya    cursing  Urvasi,  Jayanta    and  Narada.  Once 
Agastya  went  to  the  realm  of  the    Gods,  as  a  guest 
of   Indra.    On    that     day    a  performance  of  dance  by 
Urvasi  was  held  in  honour    of   Agastya.  In  the  midst 
of  the  dance  Urvasi's  eyes  fell  on  Jayanta  and  she  fell 
in  love  with  him;  her  steps  went  out  of  beat.  Narada 
also  went    wrong  slightly    in    playing    on    his    famous 
lute    called  Mahatl.    Agastya   got  angry  and    cursed 
Urvasi,  Jayanta  and  Narada.  According    to    the  curse 
Jayanta  became  a  bud.  Urvasi  was  born  in  the  earth 
as  a  woman  called  Madhavl  and  'Mahatl'  the  lute  of 
Narada  became  the  lute  of  the  people  of  the   earth. 



22)  Agastya  cursing  Dufpanya.     Duspanya   was  the    last 
son  of  the  King  of  Pataliputra.  The  wicked  Duspanya 
had  slain    a  large     number  of  babies,  and  the  King 
therefore    expelled    him    from    the  palace.  Duspanya 
went   into   the   forest,   where    he    caught  hold  of  the 
child  of  Ugraravas  and  killed  it  by  putting  it  under 
water.  Ugraravas  cursed  him    and  accordingly  he  fell 
into  water  and   died   and   his     spirit   became  a   ghost 
and      wandered     about     tormented      with    pain    and 
anguish.  At  last  the  spirit  approached  Agastya,  who 
called  his  disciple    Sutisna    and    asked  him  to  go  and 
bathe  in    the  Agni  tirtha   (a  bath)  in   the    Gandhama- 
dana  mountain  and  bring  some  water  from  the  tirtha 
and   sprinkle    it    on  the    spirit  of    Duspanya.  Sutisna 
acted  accordingly  and  immediately  the    spirit  of  Dus- 
panya received  divine  figure  and  entered  heaven.  (Setu 

23)  How    Agastya    got  golden    Bangle.     Once    Agastya 
entered  a  forest  of  about  a  hundred  yojanas  wide.  The 
forest  was  devoid  of  life.  When  he  had  walked  a  few 
more  steps  some  Gandharvas  (semi-gods)  and  celestial 
maids  came  there  singing  and  dancing.  From  among 
them  a  noble  male  being  came  forward  to  the  bank  of 
a  lake  in  the  forest  and  ate  without  any  hesitation,  the 
corpse  of  a  man    that  was    lying  there.    After  that  he 
walked    round   Agastya   and    made  obeisance  to  him. 
Agastya  asked  him  why  he  had  eaten  the  corpse  of  a 
man.  The   noble   man    told  Agastya  thus  :    "In  treta 
yuga  (the  third  age)  there  lived  a  King  named  Vidarbha. 
I  am  his  son  and  my  name  is  Sveta.  After  having  ruled, 
over  my  kingdom  for  a  long  time,  I  came  to  the  bank 
of  this  lake  and  began  to  do  penance.  After    that  dis- 
carding my  body  I  entered  heaven.  Though  I  attained 
heaven  my  hunger  was  not   appeased.  I  asked  Brahma 
how,  I,  a  dweller  of  heaven,  got  this  hunger.   Brahma 
said  that  when  I  was  King  I  had  given  nothing  to  any- 
body and  so   I  got   this    hunger    even   after  entering 
heaven.  As  a  remedy  Brahma  suggested  that  I  should 
come  here  everyday   and  eat  corpse  and  when  I    had 
completed    ten    thousand    days    the    hermit    Agastya 
would  come  here  and  that  when  I  offered  him  a  golden 
bangle  my  sin  would  be  washed  away."  Saying   thus 
Sveta  offered  to  Agastya  the  golden  bangle  given   by 
Brahma  and  then  he  vanished  and  the  corpse  also  dis- 
appeared. Sveta  went  to  heaven.  (Uttara 

24)  Other  informations  concerning  Agastya. 

(1)  Agastya   had    a   brother    called    Sutisna.    (Agni- 
purana,   Chapter  7) . 

(2)  Sutisna  was  Agastya' s  disciple  too.   (Setu  Maha- 
tmya ) . 

(3)  Ilvala   and   Vatapi  were  the  sons  of  the  giantess 
Ajarnukhi.  In  the  valley  of  a  mountain  Ajamukhi  pray- 
ed to  Durvasas  for  love    and   thus    Ilvala    and  Vatapi 
were  born  from  Durvasas.  These  two  sons    demanded 
that  Durvasas  should  impart  to  them  all  his   merits  of 
penance.    Getting  angry    Durvasas    cursed   them    that 
they  would  meet  with  death  at  the  hands  of  Agastya. 
(Skandapurana,  Asura  Kanda). 

(4)  Agastya  had  been  the  priest  of  the  King  Khela. 
(Rgveda,  112th  Sukta). 

(5)  When  Sri  Rama  returned  to  Ayodhya,  with  Slta 
from  Larika,    hermits    from  various  parts  visited  him, 
among     whom,    Dattatreya,     Namuci,     Pramuci,    Sri 
Valmiki,  Soma,    Kandu,    Agastya  and  their    disciples 
were  from  the  South.  (Uttara  Ramayana) . 

(6)  Agastya  gave    Sri  Rama  an  arrow,  which,   when 
shot  at  an  asura  (demon)   would  pierce  his  heart,  pass 
on  to  the  other  side,  fly  to  the  sea  and  bathe  in  the 
sea-water  and  return    to  the  quiver,  it  is  said.   (Uttara 

( 7)  Once  Agastya  visited  the  hermitage  of  Apastamba. 
He  asked  Agastya,  who,  of  Brahma,  Visnu   and  Siva, 
was  the  Supreme  deity.  Agastya  replied:  "These  three 
are    only    three   different   manifestations    of    the   one 
supreme  Being".   (Brahmapurana). 

(8)  For  the  story  of  how  Agastya  cursed  the  sons  of 
Manibhadra   and    transformed  them  to    seven   palms, 
see  the  word  'Saptasala'. 

(9)  There  was  a  hermit  called  Sutisna,  to  whom  Sri 
Rama    and   Laksmana   paid  a  visit    when    they  were 
wandering    in  the  forest.   This   Sutisna  is  the    young- 
er brother  of  Agastya.  (See  the  word  Sutisna). 

(10)  Agastya  cursed  Suka  and    deformed    him  into  a 
Raksasa.  (See  the  word  Suka  ii.) . 

25)  Conclusion.  It  is  believed  that  the  great  hermit 
Agastya,  who  had  performed  such  wonderful  deeds  by 
the  merits  of  his  penance,  is  still  doing  penance  in  the 
Agastya  Kuta  hills.  Agastya  who  had  travelled  through- 
out the  length  and  breadth  of  Bharata  had  several 
hermitages.  In  the  Valmiki  Ramayana,  Aranyakanda, 
Sarga  11,  a  description  is  given,  of  a  beautiful  hermit- 
age of  Agastya,  and  the  peaceful  atmosphere  that 
prevailed  in  and  around  it.  Agastya  had  presented  to 
Sri  Rama  a  bow  got  from  Visnu,  when  the  brothers 
visited  his  hermitage.  Agastya  had  accompanied  Sri 
Rama  and  his  followers  on  his  return  journey  to 
Ayodhya  from  Lanka,  with  Slta  after  killing  Ravana. 
There  is  a  legend  in  the  Tamilnad  that  Agastya  was  a 
member  of  the  first  two  'Saiighas'  (groups)  of  the 
"three  Sanghas",  mentioned  in  Tamil  literature.  As 
Agastya  was  dwarfish  he  is  mentioned  as  Kurumuni, 
(short  hermit)  in  Tamil  works.  He  has  written  a  Tamil 
grammar  on  music,  literature  and  drama.  But  this 
work  is  not  available  now.  The  Tamil  Grammar 
'Tolkapyam',  which  is  considered  to  be  the  oldest  gram- 
mar, was  written  by  Tolkapyar,  one  of  the  twelve 
disciples  of  Agastya<  Even  today  in  certain  temples  in 
the  Tamilnad,  Agastya-worship  is  carried  on.  Kambar, 
has  mentioned  about  Agastya  in  his  Ramayana.  A  great 
Tamil  author  Villiputturan  says  that  the  Tamil  langu- 
age is  the  beautiful  maiden  presented  by  Agastya. 
It  is  believed  that  the  following  works  have  been  com- 
posed by  Agastya: 

1)  Agastya  Glta  ;  in  the  Varahapurana,  Pasupalopakh- 

2)  Agastya  Sarhhita;  in  Paiicaratra. 

3)  Agastya  Sarhhita,  in  the  Skandapurana. 

4)  Siva  Sarhhita,  in  Bhaskara  Sarhhita. 

5)  Dvaidha-nirnaya  Tantra. 

AGASTYA  KUTA.  This  is  the  sacred  mount  where 
the  sage,  Agastya,  sat  and  did  penance  during  his  so- 
journ in  the  southern  parts  of  India.  In  the  Kiskindha 
Kanda  of  Valmiki  Ramayana  we  find  King  Sugrlva 
commanding  that  all  his  soldiers  going  in  search  of 
Slta  should  pay  homage  to  the  sage  Agastya. 

AGASTYA  PARVATA.  This  is  a  mountain  in  South 
India  believed  to  belong  to  the  Kalanjara  mountain 
range.  Agastya  Kuta  is  in  this  mountain. 

AGASTYA  SARAS.  This  is  another  name  for  Agastya 




AGASTYA-ASRAMA.  The  Puranas  make  mention  of 
several  asramas  connected  with  sage  Agastya.  The 
Pfmdavas  during  their  exile  visited  an  asrama  of  this 
name.  This  is  situated  near  Paiicavatf  twentyfour  miles 
to  the  south-east  of  Nasik.  It  is  known  as  Agastya-giri 
now.  (Sloka  20,  Chapter  80;  and  Sloka  1,  Chapter  96 
of  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 

The  Mahfibharata  mentions  another  Agastya-Asrama 
near  Prayaga.  Dharmaputra  along  with  Saint  Lomasa 
stayed  here  for  some  time.  Valmlki  describes  an  asrama 
of  this  name  which  Rama  and  Laksmana  visited  during 
their  exile  in  the  forests.  (Chapter  11,  Aranya  Kanda 
of  the  Ramayana). 

AGASTYA  TlRTHA.  This  is  one  of  the  five  tirthas  or 
sacred  places  of  worship  lying  scattered  in  the  southern 
ocean.  The  other  four  are  the  following:  (1)  The 
Saubhadra  tirtha  (2)  The  Pauloma  tirtha  (3)  The 
Karandhama  tirtha  and  (4)  the  Atipavana  tirtha. 
These  five  were  known  as  Panca  tirthas  and  many  saints 
used  to  live  there.  There  lived  in  each  of  these  tirthas 
one  huge  and  fierce  crocodile  and  all  the  saints  living 
there,  afraid  of  these  crocodiles,  deserted  their  places 
one  by  one.  (Ref  :  Sloka  3,  Chapter  220  of  Adi  Parva, 
M.B.  For  more  details  see  under  Panca  tirtha) . 

AGASTYA  VATA.  This  is  a  sacred  shrine  in  the  neigh- 
bourhood of  the  Himalayas.  Arjuna  paid  a  visit  to  this 
place  while  he  was  living  with  his  brothers  in  the 
forests  during  their  period  of  exile.  (Sloka  2,  Chapter 
214  of  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

AGATI.  A  city.  Two  sons  Taksaka  and  Chattraketu 
were  born  to  Laksmana  (the  brother  of  Sri  Rama) 
by  his  wife  Urmila.  The  court  of  the  eldest  prince 
Taksaka  was  situated  in  the  city  of  Agati.  Formerly 
this  place  was  known  as  Kanakhala  and  was  occupied 
by  forest  tribes.  Exterminating  these  forest  tribes, 
Laksmana  built  a  city  there  and  apportioned  it  to  his 
eldest  son  Taksaka.  (Uttara  Ramayana). 

AGHA.  The  name  of  an  asura.  This  asura  was  one  of 
the  followers  of  Karhsa.  According  to  the  instructions 
of  Karhsa,  Agha  once  set  out  to  Gokula  to  kill  Sri 
Krsna.  At  that  time  Sri  Krsna  was  playing  on  the 
banks  of  the  river  Kalindi  with  other  cowherds.  Agha- 
sura  watched  the  games  of  the  children  from  the  sky 
above.  Then  he  transformed  himself  into  a  colossal 
serpent  and  lay  with  his  mouth  wide  open;  his  open 
mouth  looked  like  an  immense  cave.  The  foul  smell 
coming  from  his  mouth  soon  spread  over  the  whole 
place.  Sri  Krsna  and  the  other  children  did  not  know 
anything  about  this.  In  the  course  of  their  games  they 
walked  into  the  cave-like  mouth  of  Agha  and  were  soon 
trapped  in  his  belly.  Agha  then  closed  his  mouth  and 
all  the  boys  including  Sri  Krsna  were  now  imprisoned 
inside  his  body.  Some  of  the  boys  died.  Realizing  the 
situation  Sri  Krsna  now  enlarged  his  body.  His  body 
grew  larger  and  larger  until  at  last  it  burst  open  the  body 
of  the  serpent  (Agha) .  Thus  Agha  was  killed.  Sri  Krsna 
then  restored  the  dead  boys  to  life  by  his  divine  looks 
(Kataksa) .  This  Aghasura  was  the  brother  of  Bakasura 
and  Putana.  (Bhagavata,  Skandha  10,  Chapter  12). 

AGHAMARSA^A.  He  was  a  great  hermit  of  austerity, 
who  had  observed  the  duties  pertaining  to  Vana- 
prastha  (the  third  of  the  four  stages  of  life — forest  her- 
mit). (M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  244,  Stanza  16). 

AGHAMARSAIV'A  SOKTA.  This  is  a  hymn  in  the  Rg- 
veda.  It  is  said  that  all  sins  will  be  eliminated,  if  this 
hymn  is  recited  three  times,  standing  in  water. 

AGHARDDANAVAMI.  (See  the  word  NAVAMl 

AGHASVA.  A  King  hermit  (Rajarsi)  named  Pedu. 
(Rgveda,  Mandala  1,  Anuvaka  17,  Sukta  116). 


1)  Genealogy.    Agni  was  descended  from  Visnu  in  this 
order  :  Visnu-Brahma-Aiigiras-Brhaspati-Agni. 

2)  Birth.   We  come  across  several  contradictory  state- 
ments in  the  Puranas  regarding  the  birth  of  Agni.  There 
is  some   real  difficulty,  therefore,    in  tracing  correctly 
the   true  genealogy  of  Agni.   The  one  given    above  is 
based  on  statements  in  Bhagavata  and  Mahabharata. 
Aiigiras  is  one  of  the  six  mind- born  sons  of  Brahma.* 
Afigiras  married  Sraddha  and  got  four  daughters  and 
two    sons.    Brhaspati  was  one  of  the  sons  and  Utatthya 
was   the   other.    The   daughters  were  Sinivali,  Kuhu, 
Raka  and    Anumati.  (There  is  a    mention    of  a  third 
son  named  Samvarta  in  the  Bhagavata   by  Eluthassan 
though  the  original  quoted   below    does  not  say  so) 

Sraddha  tu  angirasah  patni 

Catasro  '  sutakanyakah 

Sinivali  Kuhu  Raka 

Caturthya  '  anumatistatha 


Khyatau  svarocise'ntare 

Utatthyo  bhagavan  saksat 

BrahmisthaJca  Brhaspatih. 

Brhaspati  married  Candramasi  and  got  six  divine  sons. 
Of  these  Sarhyu,  the  eldest,  married  Satya  and  Agni 
was  born  to  Sariiyu  of  Satya.  ( Slokas  1  to  4,  Chapter 
219,  Aranya  Kanda  of  Malayalam  Mahabharata). 

3)  Agni— One   of    the     Afta-dik-pdlakas.      (Asia  =  eight, 
dik  =  zone,    palaka  =  guardian ).   The  Devi   Bhagavata 
states  in  its  eighth  chapter  that  Agni  is  one  of  the  eight 
guards  posted  at  the  eight  different  zones    to  protect 
the  universe.    Indra  guards   the  east;  Agni,  the  south- 
east; Yama  the  south;  Nirrti,    the  south-west;  Varuna, 
the  west;  Vayu,  the  north-west;  Kubera,  the  North  and 
Siva,    the  north-east.  The  place   where  Agni  sits    on 
guard  is  known  as  tejovati. 

4)  Agni— One  of  the  five    elements.  The    universe  is    be- 
lieved to  be  composed  of  five  elements  of  which  Agni 
is  one.  The   other  four    are   Water,  Earth,  Ether  and 

5 )  The  story  of  how  Agni   gave  a  Maya  Sitd   ( Phantom 
Sitd)  to  £ri  Rama.  During    their    exile  in    the  forests 
Rama   and  Laksmana  were  for  some  time  living  in  an 
asrama  built   on    the  shores  of  the  ocean.    One    day 
Agni   disguised    as  a  Brahmin  approached  them  and 
said  "O,  Sri  Rama,  thou  art  born  to    kill  the  demon 
Ravana  and  save  the  world  from  his  atrocities.   Sita  is 
going  to  be  a  cause  for  that.  Time  is  not  far  for  you 
to  finish  this  duty  of  yours.  Ravana  is  soon  to  come  and 
kidnap  your  wife,  Sita.  You  must,  therefore,  allow  me 
to  play  a  trick  on  Ravana.   Entrust  Sita  with  me  and 
I  shall  keep  her  safe.  In  her  place  here  you   can  keep 
a  Maya  Sita  (Phantom  Sita)    which  will  be  a  live  rep- 
lica of  your  real  wife.  In  the  end  when  you  take  back 
Sita    after  killing  Ravana  you   will    be    compelled  to 
throw  your  wife  into  the  fire  to  test  her    chastity.  At 

*Manas=Mind.   Putra=Son,  Manasa-putras  are  sons  created  from  the  mind  of  Brahma,  Sloka  10,  Chapter  65,  Adi  Parva,  M.B. 




that  time  I  will  take  back  the  replica  and  give  you 
back  your  real  wife".  Sri  Rama  was  very  much 
pleased  to  hear  this.  Agni  then,  by  his  yogic  powers 
created  a  Phantom  Sita  and  gave  her  to  him.  Rama 
kept  this  as  a  secret  even  from  Laksmana.  In  the  great 
Rama-Ravana  battle  Ravana  was  killed  and  Sri  Rama 
took  back  Sita  to  his  kingdom.  Then  respecting  public 
opinion  and  wishing  to  establish  in  public  the  purity 
of  his  queen  King  Sri  Rama  put  her  into  the  fire.  At 
that  moment  Agni  took  back  the  replica  and  gave 
back  the  real  Sita  to  Sri  Rama.  Sita  thus  came  out 
from  the  fire  unscathed.  Later,  on  the  advice  of  Rama 
and  Agni,  the  Phantom  Sita  went  to  the  sacred  place 
Puskara  and  started  doing  tapas  (penance)  there. 
After  doing  tapas  for  a  long  period  of  three  lakhs  of 
divine  years  this  Phantom  Sita  became  known  as 
Svargalaksml.  It  was  this  Svargalaksml  that  later  on 
in  the  Dvapara  yuga  came  out  from  the  yajfia  kunda 
of  King  Pancala  as  Paficali  and  became  the  consort  of 
the  Pandavas.  VedavatI,  daughter  of  Kusadhvaja  in 
Krtayuga,  Sita,  daughter  of  Janaka  in  the  Treta  yuga, 
and  Pancall,  daughter  of  Drupada  in  Dvapara  yuga 
are  one  and  the  same  person.  On  account  of  this  she 
is  known  as  trihayanl  also.  (Chapter  9  of  Devi 

6 )  The  story  of  how  Agni  got  indigestion.    In    olden  times 
there  was  a  bold  and  mighty  King  called   Svetaki.  He 
conducted  several  different    types  of  yajfia.    Afflicted 
by  the  unending  dense  smoke  in  the  yajna  hall  all  the 
ascetics  left  the  place  and  went  their  way.  Undaunted 
by  this,  Svetaki  started  another  twelve-year  sacrifice  in 
which  not  a  single  sage  took  part.  The  sages  rebuked 
him  and  said  if  he  wanted  to  conduct  a  sacrifice  again 
he  could  invite  sudras   to  help  him.     (Sudras    belong 
to  the  lowest  caste  among  Hindus  and  are  not  allow- 
ed to     participate    in    sacrifices    generally.)    Enraged 
by  this  insult  Svetaki  went  to    Kailasa  and    did    fierce 
penance.  Lord  Siva  appeared  before  him  and  gave  him 
Durvasas    as   a  priest  for  his    yajfia.  For  twelve  years 
sage    Durvasas    performed     the    yajfia     pouring   into 
the    mouth  of  Agni    through  the    sacrificial    pit   un- 
limited   materials    of  food.    Agni    was   overfed    and 
he  got  indigestion.   He  lost  all    appetite    for  food,  be- 
came  weak    and    the    brilliance    of   his    face    faded. 
(Chapter  235,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

7)  The  story  of  how  Agni  burnt  the   big  forest,  Khandava. 
When  the  indigestion  continued  without  abate  for  some 
time   Agni    approached  Brahma   and  asked  for  a  cure. 
Brahma  declared  that  his   indigestion  would  be  cured 
if  Agni  could   burn   the   huge  forest,    Khandava,  the 
abode  of  the  enemies  of  the   Devas.  Agni  immediately 
started  consuming  the  forest.  But  the  inhabitants  of  the 
forest  soon  quenched  the  fire.  Disappointed  Agni  went 
to  Brahma  again  and  the  latter  advised  him  to  wait  for 
some  time  till  the  advent  of  Nara-Narayanas   to   that 
forest.  They  would  then    help  Agni  to  burn  the  forest. 
Agni  waited  for  the  time  to   come.  At   that    time    the 
Pandavas  were  living  in  Indraprastha   with  Sri  Krsna. 
When  the  heat  became  unbearable   there  Arjuna  and 
Krsna   came  to  the  banks  of  river   Yamuna.    Hearing 
about   the  arrival  of  Krsna  and  Arjuna  who  were  none 
but   the    incarnations  of  Narayana  and  Nara,  Agni  dis- 
guised   as    a  brahmin  approached  them  and  requested 
them  to  help  him  to  burn  the  Khandava  forest.  Agni 
added   that  any  attempt  of  his   to  burn  the  forest   was 

always  foiled  by  Indra  who  would  send  a  heavy  down- 
pour of  rain  to  quench  the  fire  because  Taksaka,  an 
intimate  friend  of  Indra,  was  living  there. 
To  gain  his  end  Agni  gave  Arjuna  an  arrow-case 
which  would  never  be  empty,  a  chariot  bearing  a 
monkey  flag,  four  white  horses  adorned  with  gold 
chains  and  also  the  famous  Gandlva  bow.  To  Sri  Krsna 
he  gave  the  cakrayudha  or  the  divine  wheel-weapon. 
(All  these  military  equipments  were  once  given  to 
Agni  by  Varuna. )  When  all  these  were  given  to  them 
Krsna  and  Arjuna  got  ready  to  help  Agni  to  burn  the 
forest.  Agni  started  burning  the  forest,  Indra  at  once 
sent  a  heavy  downpour  of  rain  and  Arjuna  created  a 
canopy  of  arrows  above  the  forest  preventing  the  rains 
from  falling  on  the  forest.  Agni  carried  on  his  work 
undisturbed,  the  forest  was  burnt  and  Agni  was  cured 
of  his  indigestion.  (Slokas  233  to  239,  Adi  Parva, 

8)  Agni  falls  in  love.  As  an  inaugural  procedure  to  the 
great    Rajasuya   which     Dharmaputra     performed    at 
Indraprastha  his  four  brothers  Bhlma,  Arjuna,  Nakula 
and  Sahadeva  conducted  a  victory  march  to  the  four 
different  sides  of  the    kingdom.  Sahadeva    who  turned 
south  conquered    many  kings    including   Dantavaktra 
and  Bhismaka  and  reached  a  country  called  Mahismati- 
pura.  There  he   had    to   encounter    a    powerful   king 
called  Nila.  Before  long  there  broke  a  fire  in  his    camp. 
Disheartened,  Sahadeva  prayed    to  the  God,  Agni,  for 
help.  It  was  then  that  Sahadeva  came  to  know  about 
the  ties  between  Agni  and  Nila. 

"King  Nila  had  a  beautiful  daughter  named  Sudar^ana. 
Once  when  she  was  talking  to  her  father  after  having 
entered  the  Agni-hotra  Agni  fell  in  love  with  her.  From 
that  day  onwards  Agni  became  dreamy  about  the 
beautiful  lips  of  SudarSana.  It  reached  a  stage  when 
Agni  would  burn  only  if  it  was  blown  by  the  lips  of 
Sudarsana.  This  ended  in  Agni  marrying  Sudarsana. 
After  the  marriage  Agni  lived  in  the  palace  of  his 
father-in-law,  King  Nila,  as  a  useful  ally.  It  was  at  this 
time  that  Sahadeva  came  to  conquer  Nila.  But  Agni 
knew  that  for  the  proper  conduct  of  the  Rajasuya  of 
Dharmaputra  his  father-in-law  had  to  surrender  to 
Sahadeva  and  so  advised  his  father-in-law  to  do  so. 
What  appeared  to  be  a  difficult  problem  was  thus 
easily  solved.  (Chapter  31,  Sabha  Parva,  M.B.) . 

9)  How  Emperor  Sibi  was  tested  by  Agni.  Once    Agni  and 
Indra  thought  of  testing  how  strong  and  deep  was  the 
sense  of  charity  in  Emperor  Sibi.  Indra  took  the  shape 
of  a  hawk  and  Agni  that  of  a  dove  and  the  dove  flew 
and  dropped    down   into    the  lap  of  the  Emperor  who 
was    at    that  time    doing   a  yaga.  The   hungry  hawk 
came    chasing  its   prey  and  finding  the  dove  in  the  lap 
of  the  Emperor  said  :    "O    King,  is  it  proper  on   your 
part  to  withhold  my  food  from  me,  and  keep  it  in  your 
lap  ?"  Hearing  this  Sibi  replied:  "This  dove  has  sought 
refuge  in  me.  It  is  my  duty  to  give  it  protection.    If  it 
is  only  food  you  want  I  shall  give  you  food."  Sibi  then 
offered    many    things    including    his    kingdom  to  the 
hawk  in    return    for  the  dove.     But  the  hawk  refused 
them  all  and  finally  agreed  to  accept  an  equal  weight 
of   flesh    from  the    body  of  the  Emperor.  Sibi  without 
any  hesitation  cut  a  portion  of  his    thigh   and  weighed 
it  against  the  dove  in  a  scale.  The  dove  weighed  more 
and  the  Emperor  started  putting  more  and  more    flesh 
from  his  body  to  make  the  weight  equal.  But  the  dove 




always  weighed  more  and  at  last  the  Emperor  said  he 
would  weigh  himself  against  the  dove.  As  the  weak  and 
fleshless  Emperor  was  about  to  get  into  the  pan  of  the 
scale  Agni  and  Indra  emerged  from  the  bodies  of  the 
dove  and  hawk  and  appeared  before  the  Emperor. 
They  blessed  him  and  immediately  took  him  to  heaven. 
(Chapter  131,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

10)  Agni  and  the  testicles  of  a  goat.  The  occasion  is  when 
sage  VisVamitra  is  taking  Rama  and  Laksmana   to  the 
forests  to  give    protection  to    the  sages  against  the  de- 
mons. They   reached    the  place  where  Ahalya  lay  as  a 
stone  cursed  by   Gautama.  Vi^vamitra   told  them  the 
story:  "It  was  here  that  the  great  sage,  Gautama,  lived 
with  his  beautiful  consort,  Ahalya.  Once  Indra  had  an 
intercourse  with  her  privately  and  Gautama  coming  to 
know    of  the  misdeed  cursed  her  and  turned  her   into 
stone.  By  the   curse  of  the  same    sage  Indra    lost  his 
testicles.  Greatly    aggrieved  by    this  loss  Indra  prayed 
to  god  Agni  for    help  and    on  the   advice  of   Agni  the 
devas  removed  the  deformity  by  placing  a  goat's  testi- 
cles   instead."  (Slokas  48  &  49,  Bala  Kanda,  Valmiki 

1 1 )  How  sage  Bhrgu  cursed  Agni.  Sage    Bhrgu  was  living 
with  his  wife  Puloma  in  his  a'srama.  Puloma    became 
pregnant.  One  day  when  Bhrgu  wanted    to  go  out  for 
a  bath  in  the  river  he  asked  Agni  to  keep  a  watch  over 
his  pregnant    wife.  There    was    a    demon    by    name 
Puloma  who  was  once  in  love  with  Puloma.    On  this 
particular    day   Puloma   entered    the   asrama    to    see 
his  former  love.  When  he  entered  the  asrama  Puloma 
saw  Agni  there  burning  with  a  brilliant   flame  in   the 
fire-pit.  Puloma    said  :  "O  God   of  fire,  if  I  ask  you  a 
question  you    must   give  me  an  impartial  reply.  I  was 
in  love   with  this    Puloma  and  I  had    accepted  her  as 
my  wife  spiritually.    But,  then,  her  father  gave  her  to 
Bhrgu.  Who,  then,    is    the    true  owner  of  Puloma  ?" 
Agni  was  afraid  of  Bhrgu.  Yet  he  explained   the  posi- 
tion honestly.  "It   is  true    that    Puloma    has  married 
Bhrgu.  But  he  has  not  married  her  according  to  Hindu 
rites."  Hearing   this  the    demon  changed  himself  into 
the  shape  of  a    swine  and  carried   away  Puloma.    On 
the  way  Puloma  delivered  a  male    babe   and  it  fell  on 
the  ground.  The  boy  was  named  Cyavana.  It  was  this 
boy  that  became  later  on  the  famous   Cyavana  Maha- 
rsi.  Even  at  birth  the  boy    was    brilliant    as    the  Sun 
to  look  at   and  Puloma,   the  demon,  noticing  the  un- 
usual brilliance  of  the  child  left  the  mother  and  child 
on  the  way  and  fled  frightened.  Puloma  returned  to  the 
asrama  carrying  the    child  weeping    profusely  all  the 
way  and    creating  a  lanchrymal  river    called   Vadhu- 
saras.  As  soon  as    she  entered  the    asrama    the  angry 
sage  asked  "Who  told  Puloma  that  you  are  my  wife  ?" 
Puloma  then  told  her  husband  all  that  happened  there 
and  Bhrgu   called  Agni  and  cursed  him    thus  :  "May 
you  be  a  consumer  of  all  things  on  this  Earth".  Great- 
ly   aggrieved   Agni  went   away  and  hid  himself.  The 
absence  of  Agni  created  chaos  in  all  the   three  worlds; 
Heaven,  Earth  and  the  Nether-world.  A  deputation  of 
all    the    afflicted  people    waited    upon    Brahma    and 

Brahma  modified  the  curse  and  declared  that  all  that 
Agni  touched  would  become  pure.  Agni  was  consoled 
and  he  started  his  work  as  usual. 

12)  How  Agni    cursed  frogs,   birds   and  elephants.  Many 
important   events    took  place    while  Agni    was  under- 
ground cursed  by  Bhrgu.  It  was  during    that  time  that 
ParvatI    cursed    all    the    Devas  and  the    Devas    were 
defeated  by  the  asuras    (demons).  The    necessity   of  a 
warrior   capable    of  defeating  the   asuras  arose  then. 
The  idea  of  creating  Lord  Subrahmanya   came  up  and 
Brahma  said  that  only    Agni  could  help    them    in  this 
matter   since    Agni  was  the  only  one  who  escaped  from 
the  curse  of  ParvatI,  being   underground    at    the  time 
of  the  curse.   The  Devas  started  a  vigilant  search  but 
Agni  was  not  to  be  found.  Agni  was  then  hiding  inside 
the  ocean.  The  ocean  was  getting  hot  and  the  animals 
living  there  found  their  life  unbearable.  Frogs  went  to 
the  devas  and    told    them    where   Agni    was    hiding. 
Enraged  at  this  Agni  cursed  the  frogs  saying  that  they 
would   never  be    able  to  find    the    taste  of    anything. 
Frogs  went  weeping  to  the  devas  who  in    turn  blessed 
the  frogs  saying  that  they  would  acquire  the  ability  to 
move  about  easily  in   any  darkness.  Agni  changed  his 
place  of  hiding  and    went    and  hid  in    a    big   banyan 
tree.  An    elephant  going   by  that   way  found  him  out 
and   informed    the    devas;    knowing  this    Agni  cursed 
the  elephants  saying  that    its    tongue  would   go   deep 
inside.  But  the  devas  blessed  the  elephants  saying    that 
the  position  of  the  tongue  would  never  be  a  hindrance 
to  free  eating  and  that  elephants  would  be  able  to  eat 
anything   and   everything.    Agni  left  the  banyan  tree 
and  hid  himself  in  the  hollow  of  a  SamI  tree.  A  little 
bird  living  in  that  tree  gave  information   to  the  devas 
and  the  devas    found    him  out  before    he    got  time  to 
leave  the  place.  Agni  cursed  the  bird    saying   that  its 
tongue  would  always  be   curved  inside  and  the  devas 
blessed  it  saying  that  the  curvature   would   help  it  to 
sing  beautiful  songs.  Since  Agni  was    found   out  from 
Sana  tree  this  tree  became  sacred.  Since   this    finding 
out  of  Agni  after  a  long  absence  is  like  a   re-birth  of 
Agni  the  Puranas  mention  that   Agni   was  born   from 
the  Saml  tree.  The  Devas  then  requested  Agni  to   help 
them  to  create  a    son  capable  of  conquering   the  de- 
mons.*   (Chapter  85,  Anusasana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

13)  Birth  of  Subrahmanya.  At  that  time  Varuna  performed 
a  yaga.     All    the    dikpalakas    (zone    guardians   of  the 
universe)     including    Siva    participated  in    the    yaga. 
Seeing  the  beautiful  wives  of  the  sages  Siva  had  emission. 
Taking  the  semen  in    his  hand  he  put  it  into  the  fire. 
Agni  carried  it  to  Ganga  and  requested  her   to    take  it 
for  conception.  Though  she  at  first  refused  she    took  it, 
became  pregnant  and   finally  delivered    a   male    child 
whom  she  threw  into  the  forest  Saravana.    It    was    this 
child    who  became    known    as  Karttikeya   or   Subrah- 
manya later  on.   (Chapter  85,  Anusasana  Parva,  M.B.). 

14)  How  Agni  blessed  Nala.  While  Nala  was  going  to  the 
wedding  of  Damayantl  Indra,  Agni,  Varuna  and  Kala 
accosted  him  on  his  way  and    asked  him    to   go    as   a 
messenger  of  theirs  and  advise  Damayantl  to  marry  one 

*Kathasaritsagara  gives  another  version  of  why  Agni  went  and  hid  himself  under  the  ocean.  When  Kama,  the  God  of  Love,  was 
burnt  to  death  by  Siva,  Parvati,  Siva's  wife,  did  not  find  a  way  to  get  a  child  for  her  from  her  husband.  At  last  Brahma  approached  Siva  and 
told  him  that  the  absence  of  Kama  was  making  creation  difficult.  Siva  then  declared  that  thereafter  Kama  would  find  a  place  in  the  minds  of  all 
living  beings  including  himself.  Parvati  and  Siva  immediately  commenced  a  sexual  life  which  went  on  incessantly  for  a  hundred  years  with- 
out reaching  the  climax.  The  world  was  agitated  and  the  universe  stood  on  the  verge  of  ruin.  The  Devas  decided  to  send  Agni  to  intervene  But 
Agni  was  afraid  of  Siva  and  so  went  and  hid  himself  under  the  ocean.  (Chapter  6,  Lavanakalambaka  of  Kathasaritsagara) . 



of  them.  Nala  did  so  but  Damayanti  was  adamant  and 
said  she  would  marry  none  other  than  Nala.  So  all  the 
four  gods  appeared  as  Nala  in  the  wedding  hall. 
Damayanti  who  was  confused  prayed  that  she  should 
be  shown  the  real  Nala.  The  gods  then  changed  into 
their  original  forms  and  blessed  Nala.  Agni  said  he 
would  come  and  help  him  the  moment  he  wanted  him. 
Thus  Nala  became  a  good  cook  and  Nala  Pacakarii 
( Pacakarii  =  cooking)  became  famous.  Even  now  it  is  a 
synonym  for  good  cooking.  (Chapter  57,  Vana  Parva, 

15)  Agni  and  Rambhd.  There  was  once  a  danava    called 
Diiiiu.  He  had  two  sons  named    Rariibha  and    Kararh- 
bha.   They    had    no    children    and  tormented  by   this 
they  went  to    Pancanada    and  started    doing  penance. 
Rariibha  sat  in  the  centre  of  Paiicagni  (five  fires)     and 
Karariibha  in  water  to  do  penance.  Indra  afraid  of  the 
severe  and  powerful  tapas  of  the  two  took  the  form    of 
a  crocodile  and  killed    Karariibha  who    was    doing  pe- 
nance in  water  by  dragging  him  down  to  the  water.  Be- 
reaved Rariibha  started  to  commit  suicide  by  jumping 
into  the  fire.  God  Agni  appeared  before  him    then  and 
asked  him  what  he  wanted.  Rariibha  then  said  that  he 
should  get  a  son  who  would  be  famous  as  a   warrior  in 
all  the  three  worlds.  Agni  agreed.  Rariibha  on  his  way 
back    saw  a    voluptuous  she-buffalo    and  married  her 
at  yaksa  kavata.  They  lived  a  happy  married  life   and 
one  day    a    he-buffalo    envious  of   their  life    attacked 
Rariibha  and  killed  him.  Grief-stricken  Rarhbha's  wife 
jumped  into  the  funeral  pyre  and    committed   suicide. 
Then  from  the  fire  arose  a  demon   named  Mahisasura 
(Mahisa  =  Buffalo.      Asura  =  Demon) .     This  buffalo- 
demon  became  a  terror  to  all  in  the  three  worlds  later 
on.  (Chapter  5,  Devi  Bhagavata). 

16)  Difference  of  opinion  between  Agni  and  Angiras.  Bhaga- 
van  Aiigiras    did    penance    in    his  own    asrama    and 
became    more  brilliant    than  Agni.    The  whole  world 
was  submerged  in  his  brilliance.  Agni  felt  a  bit  depress- 
ed at  this.  Agni  argued    that   it  was  not  proper  on  the 
part  of  Brahma  to  give    anybody   else  more  brilliance 
than  himself.  So  as    a    protest    against  this    Agni  dis- 
appeared from  the  world.  Even  Aiigiras  was  annoyed  at 
Agni's  disappearance  and  so  he  went  and  consoled  Agni 
and  took  him  to  Brahma.  Brahma  declared  that  hence- 
forth the  world  would  recognize  Agni  as  the  father  and 
Angiras  as  his  son.  Thus    Agni    got  the  first  place  in 
effulgence.  This    is  a  story  told  by  sage  Markandeya 
to  Dharmaputra.  (Chapter  217,  Vana    Parva,  M.B. ). 

17)  Agni  and  Mahdbali.  On  their  way  to  the  forest  sage 
Visvamitra  took  Rama  and  Laksmana  to  Siddhasrama. 
The   sage   explained  to  the  princes  the  importance  of 
that  asrama.  He  said:  "Mahavisnu  lived  in  this  asrama 
for  a  number  of  years.     It  was  at  that  time  that  the 
Emperor    of    the  asuras  (demons),  Mahabali,  son  of 
Virocana,  was  ruling  the  world  conquering  even  the 
devas.  After    having    conquered  all    the  three  worlds 
Mahabali  decided  to  conduct    a    yaga.  A  deputation 
of  the  Devas  headed  by  Agni  then  waited  upon  Maha- 
visnu and  Agni  said:  ''O  Lord,  Mahabali  has    com- 
menced a  yaga  and  before  it  is  finished  you  should  go 
to  him  and    do    something    for    the    benefit    of    the 
devas".  It  was  at  this  request  of  Agni  that  Mahavisnu 
took  the  form   of  Vamana  and  sent    Mahabali  to  the 
nether-world.      (Chapter    29,      Balakanda,      Valmiki 

18)  Agni   and  Nahusa.     Repenting  for  his  act  of  killing 
Vrtra  Indra  unknown  to  anybody  went  and  hid  in  a 
lotus  in  the  Manasa  Saras  (Lake  Manasa).  Perplexed 
by  the  disappearance  of  their  leader  the  devas  brought 
Nahusa  from  the  Earth  and  made  him    their    leader. 
Nahusa    became    very  proud  and  arrogant  of  his  new 
position  and  tried  to  make  Indrani    his  wife.    Indrani 
went  to    Brhaspati    for    help.    Brhaspati    commanded 
Agni  to  go  and  find  out  Indra.  Agni  searched  for  him 
in   forests,    rivers    and    oceans.    At   last    he    went    to 
Manasa  Saras  and  searched  among  the  lotuses.    There 
he  found  Indra  hiding  in    a   lotus    and   Brhaspati  was 
duly    informed.     Then    Brhaspati    gave    Indrani  some 
clever    directions    to    kill  Nahusa    and  Nahusa      was 
killed.   (See  Agastya) .   There  is  a  story  in  Sand  Parva, 
Chapter  28,  of  how  Agni  took  for  himself  a  quarter  of 
the  sin   which    Indra  acquired  because  of  his  killing 
Vrtra,  a    brahmin    by    birth.     (Chapter  14,  Udyoga 
Parva,  M.B.). 

19)  Agni    Deva  and    Karttaviryarjuna.  After    the  great 
Kuruksetra  battle  the  Pandavas  went   again  to  Kuru- 
ksetra   along  with    Sri    Krsna.    On  their    way  Krsna 
showed  them  the   Parasuramahradas    and   narrated  to 
them   several     stories   of  Rama.    Reference    to   Agni 
comes  when  Krsna  explains  the  reason  why  Parasurama 
cut  off  the  thousand  hands  of  Karttaviryarjuna.  It  was 
at  the  time    when    Karttaviryarjuna    was    ruling    the 
three  worlds  by  his  might  that  Agni  went  and  asked  for 
alms  from  him.  Karttavirya  gave  Agni  mountains  and 
forests  for  his  food  which   Agni  burnt  and  ate.   In  one 
of  the  forests  was  the  asrama  of  sage  Apava  and  that 
also  was  burnt.  Enraged  at  this  the  sage  cursed  Kartta- 
virya saying  that  his  thousand  hands  would  be  cut  off 
by  Parasurama.  Though    the  curse    was  not  seriously 
minded  by  the  King  then,  it  so  happened  that  before 
long  Karttavirya  had  to    encounter    Parasurama  in  a 
battle  when  the  children  of  the  King  stole  a  sacrificial 
cow  belonging  to  Jamadagni,    father   of  Parasurama. 
In    the   battle    all    the    thousand    hands    of   Kartta- 
viryarjuna were  cut  off  by  Parasurama.    (Chapter  43, 
Santi  Parva,  M.B.). 

20)  How  Agni  was  duped.     Once  the  wives  of  the  Sapta- 
rsis   (seven   Saints)    attended  a  yaga  where  Agni    was 
also  present.  Agni  fell  in  love  with  them  but  knowing 
it  to  be  futile  to  make  any  attempt   to  fulfil  his  desire 
he  went  to  the  forests  dejected.  Svahadevi,  daughter  of 
Daksa  was  for  a  long  time  craving  to  marry  Agni  and 
she  decided  to  take  advantage  of  the  opportunity  thus 
offered.  Disguising  herself  as  the  wife  of  Angiras,  one 
of  the  seven  saints,  she  approached  Agni  and  said  :  "O 
Lord,  I  am  Siva,  wife  of  Angiras.  We  were  all  excited 
when  you  darted  cupids'  arrows  against   us  and  they 
have  now  selected  me  to  come  to  you  for  fulfilling  your 
desire".  Agni  believed  her  and  took  her  as  his  consort. 
(Chapters  223  to  227  of  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 

21)  How  Agni  became  a  doctor.     There  was  once  a  sage 
called   Dattatreya  who  had   a  son   called  Nimi.  Nimi 
had  a    son    and    he   died    after   thousand    years.   The 
bereaved  sage  performed  a  Sraddha  which  was  attend- 
ed by  all  devas.  The  feast  was   so  sumptuous  that    the 
devas  got    indigestion   after    that.    Consulting   Brahma 
Agni  prescribed  a  remedy  for  their  indigestion.  He  said: 
"whenever  you  take  any  food  make  me  also  a  partici- 
pant in  that.  If  you  do  so  you  will  never   get  indiges- 
tion". That  is  why  a  very  small  portion  of  any  cooked 




food  is  first  thrown  into  the  fire  before  given  for  eat- 
ing. This  story  is  part  of  Bhisma's  oration  to  Dharma- 
pntra  on  the  origin  of  Sriiddha  (The  ceremony  con- 
ducted on  the  anniversary  of  the  death  of  a  person  by 
his  son).  (Chapter  92,  Anusasana  Parva,  M.B. ). 

22)  How  Agni  became  a  horse.     There  was  once  a  precep- 
tor   named  Aveda.  He  got  a  disciple  named  Uttanga. 
One    day  Aveda   left    his  asrama    for  a  distant    place 
leaving  his  disciple  in  charge  of  the  management  of  the 
asrama.  The  preceptor  was  absent  fora  longtime  and 
his   wife  started   making  love  to    Uttaiiga.  The  dutiful 
disciple  strongly  objected  to  this.  When  Uttanga  com- 
pleted his  course  of  study  under   Aveda    he    enquired 
what  he  should  give    to  his  preceptor.  The  preceptor 
directed  him  to  his  wife.  The  wife  who  bore  a  grudge 
against  Uttanga   resolved  to  tease    him    and  said  that 
he    should   go    to    King    Pausya  and    beg    of  him  the 
earrings  worn  by  his  wife.  Uttanga  started   immediately 
and    getting    the    earrings  was   coming   back  when  on 
the  way  Taksaka  wrested  the  ornament   from  him  and 
went  and   hid  in    the  nether-world.  Uttanga  followed 
Taksaka  and  there  Agni  in  the  form  of  a  horse  appear- 
ed before    him  and  asked   Uttanga  what    he   wanted. 
He  replied  that  he  wanted  to  subdue  all  the  serpents  in 
the  nether-world.  Agni  then  advised  him  to  blow  thro' 
the  nostrils  of  the  horse.  As  he  did  so  flames  burst  forth 
from  all  the  openings  of  the  horse    making  the  nether- 
world hot  and  smoky.  Taksaka  was  frightened  and    he 
at  once  gave    back  the  earrings   to  Uttaiiga.    Uttanga 
was  again  worried  for  he  had  very  little  time  to  carry  the 
earrings  to  the  preceptor  in  time.  Here  again  Agni  helped 
him  by  carrying  him  swiftly  on  his  back  to  the  asrama. 
When  the  preceptor  and  his  wife  found  that   Uttanga 
had  carried  out  their  wish  they  blessed  him.  (Chapter 
3,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

23)  Agni  becomes  a  messenger.     Once  there  arose  a   mis- 
understanding   between   Brhaspati   and    Sarhvarttaka, 
sons  of  Angiras.  Brhaspati  went  to  devaloka   as  priest 
while  the  other  remained  in  the  world  as  a  mad  saint. 
At  that  time  a  King  called  Marutta  invited  Brhaspati  to 
officiate   as    priest    for  a  yajna  of  his.  But   Brhaspati 
refused  to  accept  it.  Narada    saw  Marutta    in  despair 
and  told  him  thus:  "You   go    to  Kasi    (Benares)    and 
there  at  Puradvara  place  a  dead  body  and  wait  there. 
Sariivarttaka,  Brhaspati's  brother  will  come  and  repri- 
mand you.  Without  minding    his  scoldings  follow  him 
and  request  him    to    become    the  chief  priest  for  your 
yaga.  He  will    then   ask   you  who  advised   you    to    do 
like  this.  Tell  him  that  Narada  did  so  and  if  he   asks 
where  he  could  find  Narada  do   tell  him  that   Narada 
is  hiding    inside  Agni".  Hearing  this  Marutta  went  to 
Kasi  and  did  all  as  directed.   Sarhvartta   agreed  to  be- 
come the  priest  but  wanted  Marutta  to  bring  some  gold 
from  Kailasa  before   that.   Marutta  brought  that   also 
and  the  yajna  started.  Brhaspati  when  he  came  to  know 
of  all   these  developments  became  sorry  for    his  refusal 
first  and  decided  to  become  the  priest  of  Marutta  for  his 
yaga.  It  was  Agni  who  carried  this  message    of  consent 
to  King  Marutta.  Thus  Marutta's  yajna  was  performed 
in  a  grand  way.  (Chapter  9,  Asvamedha  Parva,  M.B.) . 

24)  Agni    takes    back    the    Gandiva.     At    the     time    of 
Khandaya  dahana  (burning  of  Khandava  forest)  Agni 
gave  Arjuna  the  famous   Gandiva  bow  which  Varuna 
had   given    him.   After  the  great  Mahabharata  battle 
Agni  took  back  this  bow  from  Arjuna.  The  Pandavas 

at  the  fag  end  of  their  life  started  on  a  pilgrimage  to 
the  south  with  their  consort  Pancali.  Marching  along 
slowly  they  reached  the  shores  of  Aruna  Samudra 
(Aruna Ocean) .  Arjuna  had  with  him  then  the  Gandiva 
and  also  the  arrow-case  which  never  becomes  empty. 
When  they  reached  the  shores  of  the  ocean  Agni  blocked 
their  way  standing  before  them  in  the  form  of  a  huge 
mountain  and  said,  "O  Arjuna  I  am  god  Agni.  It  was  I 
who  gave  this  famous  Gandiva  bow  to  you.  The  bow 
belongs  to  Varuna.  So  please  throw  it  into  the  ocean 
and  proceed  on  your  way".  On  hearing  this  Arjuna 
threw  both  the  bow  and  the  arrow-case  into  the  ocean 
and  continued  the  march.  (Slokas  33  to  43,  Chapter 
1,  Mahaprasthanika  Parva,  M.B. ). 
25)  Additional  information  about  Agni,  the  God  of  fire. 

1)  SvahadevI,   wife   of  Agni,  gave  birth  to  three  sons, 
named   Daksinam,    Garhapatyam     and     Ahavaniyam. 
(Chapter  9,  Devi  Bhagavata) . 

2)  Agni,  the   God  of  fire,  got  three   sons   by   his   wife 
SvahadevI  named  Piivaka,  Pavamana  and  Suci.  These 
three  sons  had  all  together  fortyfive  sons.  These    forty- 
five  grandsons,  three  sons  and    Agni  himself  constitute 
the  fortynine  Fires  mentioned  in  the  puranas  (Ahgira- 

3)  Nila,    the   monkey,  is    born   of  Agni.    (Sarga    41, 
Chapter  Kiskiiidha,  Ramayana). 

4)  Dhrstadyumna,  the  great  archer,  was  born  of  Agni. 
(Sloka  126,  Chapter  67,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

5)  Subrahmanya  was  born  as  the  son  of  Agni.  (Chapter 
225,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

6)  Agni,  the  God   of  fire,  loved  all  prajapatis  like  his 
sons.  (Chapter  85,  Anusasana  Parva,  M.B.). 

7)  The   sage,    Bhrgu,  was  born  from  Agni.   (Sloka  8, 
Chapter  5,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

8)  All  Devatas  are  Agni  himself.  (Sloka  109,  Chapter  85, 
Anusasana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

9)  God  Agni  loved  God  Skanda  more  than  anybody 
else.  (Chapter  226,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 

10)  At   the   time  when  Sri  Rama  after  killing  Ravana 
was  putting  Slta  to  a  purity  test  by  throwing  her  into  the 

,  fire,  Agni  witnessed  that  Slta  had  done  no  wrong  and 
was  pure  and  chaste  as  before.  (Sloka  28,  Chapter  201, 
Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

11)  In  the    beginning   Brahma   created    the    universe. 
There  was  no  death  then  and  the  Earth  became   over- 
crowded. Brahma  got  worried  and  he  sent  fire  from  his 
body  to  burn  all  beings.  The  world  was  on   the   verge 
of  extinction  when  Lord  Siva  intervened  and  requested 
Brahma  to  withdraw  Agni  and  create  the  god  of  Death. 
( Chapter  52,  Drona  Parva.  M.B.). 

12)  Agni  is  one  of  the  Asfa  Vasus  which   are   eight   in 
number.  The  others  are  :  Apa,  Dhruva,  Soma,  Dharma, 
Anila,    Pratyusa    and    Prabhasa.    (Chapter    15,  Visnu 

13)  Suci,  son  of  Agni,  born  of  SvahadevI  is  Badavagni 
himself.  (Chapter  20,  Agni  Purana). 

14)  The  God,  Agni,    uses   a   spear  as  his  weapon  and 
the  vehicle  he  uses  is  a  goat.  (Chapter  51,  Agni  Purana). 

15)  The  sage,  Agastya,  converted  the  Visnu  idol  at  the 
Kuttalam    temple   into   one    of  Siva  and   when  people 
around  started  an  agitation  Agastya  sent    forth  flames 
of  fire    through    his  eyes.    (Asura    Kanda    of  Skanda 

16)  Agni  was  born  to  Pururavas  as  a  son  named  Jata- 
vedas.  (Chapter  14,  Navama  Skandha  of  Bhagavata). 




17)  The  Devas  wanted  help  to  clean  their  hands  when 
oblated    materials  stuck  to  their  hands  and  Agni  creat- 
ed  from    water  three    sons   named  Ekata,    Dvita    and 
Trita    for   this    purpose.  Of    these  Trita  fell  into  a  well 
while    drawing   water.    Seeing    him    fall     the    demons 
closed    the  well  but  Trita  broke  the  top  and  came  out. 
(Sukta  52,  Anuvaka  10,  Mandala  1  of  Rgveda). 

18)  Once  the  earth  looked  like  heaven  because  of   the 
innumerable  celestial  beings  who  came  to  earth  in  search 
of  Agni.  (Sukta  65,  Anuvaka  12,    Mandala   1    of   Rg- 
veda) . 

19)  The  Sun  hands  over  his   effulgence  to  Agni  in  the 
evening  and  takes  it  back  from  him  in  the  morning.  (A 
fact  from  Sruti — Sukta  71,  Anuvaka  12,  Mandala  1  of 
Rgveda) . 

20)  For  making  fire   for    the    sacrificial    ceremony  the 
sages  use  two  Arani  sticks  (These  are  two  pieces  of  wood, 
one  upper  and   another  lower,  and  fire  is  produced  by 
attrition) .  It  is  believed  that  the   sages  get  the  strength 
to  produce  fire  from  it  through  Vyana,  one  of  the  forms 
ofVayu  (air).  So  Rgveda  describes  Agni  as    the  son   of 
Vayu.  (Sukta  112/Anuvaka  16,  Mandala  1). 

21)  In  the  times  of  the  Rgveda  Agni   was   worshipped 
as  a  God.    (Sukta  1,  Anuvaka  1,  Mandala  1,    Rgveda). 

22)  Lord    Siva    entered    into    an    elaborate  and  long 
conjugal  play    for    creating     Subrahmanya.     Hundred 
years   went  by  and  still  the  preliminaries  never  ended. 
The  universe  was    on    the   verge  of  a  collapse  and   so 
the   devas   decided    to  send  Agni  to  put  a  stop  to    this 
libidinal  play  of  Siva.  But  Agni  was  afraid  of  Siva  and 
therefore  absconded  and  hid  himself  in  the  ocean.  The 
ocean  became    hot    and  the    water-animals  unable    to 
bear  the  increasing  heat  went  and  informed  the  devas  of 
Agni's  hiding  place.  Agni  cursed  them  all  saying  that  all 
of  them  would  go  dumb.  He  then  went  to  the  Mandara 
mountain  in  the  shape  of  an  owl  and  hid  there.  But  the 
devas  went  there  also  and  picked  him  up.  Agni  then  by 
his    terrible    heat    stimulated    Siva    into  action.    Siva 
threw  his  semen    into    Agni    andT  Agni  poured   it  into 
Gaiiga  and  Ganga  delivered  a  child  which  later  on  be- 
came    Subrahmanya.     (Tarariga  6,  Lavanakalambaka 
of  Kathasaritsagara) . 

26)  Conclusion.     Agni  stands  next  to  Indra  in   impor- 
tance in  the  Vedas.  Because  Agni  was  indispensable  for 
yagas  the  care  of  Agni  became  very  important.  Accord- 
ing to  the  Rgveda  the  birth  of  Agni    is  different.    Born 
of  the  clouds  Agni  reaches  the  earth  as  lightning.  Then 
Agni   forsakes  its  form  and  becomes    invisible.  It    was 
Matarisva  who  gave  form  to  Agni  and  gave  him  to  the 
Bhrgu    family.    From    that    day     onwards    it     became 
possible  to  produce  fire  and  the  Rgveda  describes    how 
Agni  is  produced  by  sages  by  the    use    of  Arani  sticks. 
The  main  job  of  Agni  is   to  receive  the    oblations    from 
devas  when  they  conduct  yagas. 

27)  Synonyms  of  Agni. 

Agnirvaisvanaro'  Vahnih 
Vitihotro  Dhananjayah 
Krpi  tayonir  j  valano 
Barhissusma  Krsnavartma 
Sociskesah  Usarbhudhah 
Asrayaso  Brhadbhanuh 
Krsanuh  Pavako'nalah 
Rohitasvo   Vayusakhah 

Hiranyaretah  hutabhuk 
Dahano  Havyavahanah 
Saptarcirdamunah  Sukra- 
Badavo  Badavanalah 
Vahnerdvayorj  val  akila- 
Varcirhetih  sikha  striyam 
Trisu  sphuliiigognikanah 
Ksantapah  Sajvarah  samau 
Ulkasyannirgata  jvala 
Bhutir  Bhasita  Bhasmam 
Ksaro  raksa.  ca  davastu 
Davo  vanahutasanah. 

The  synonyms: 

1)  Agni,  Vaisvanarah,  Vahnih,  Vitihotra,  Dhanafijaya, 
Krpitayoni,    Jvalana,    Jatavedas,  Tanunapat,    Barhis, 
Susma,    Krsnavartma,    Sociskesa,    Usarbhudha,  Asra- 
yasa,  Brhadbhanu,  KpSanu,  Pavaka,  Anala,  Rohitasva, 
Vayusakha,  Sikhavan,  Asusuksani,  Hiranyaretas,  Huta- 
bhuk,   Banana,     Havyavahana,     Saptarcis,    Damuna, 
Sukra,  Citrabhanu,  Vibhavasu,  Suci,  Appitta. 

2)  Badavagni  :  Aurva,  Badava,  Badavanala. 

3)  Agnijvala:  Jvala,  Kila,  Arcis,  Heti,  Sikha.  (Flame) 

4)  Sparks  :  Sphuliriga,  Agnikana. 

5)  Heat  :  Santapa,  Sajvara. 

6)  Firebrand  :  Ulka. 

7)  Ashes:  Bhuti,  Bhasita,  Bhasma,  Ksara,  Raksa. 

8)  Wild-fire  :  Dava,  Dava,  Vanahutasana. 
AGNIBAHU.     A  son  of  the  first  Manu. 
AGNIDATTA.     See  under  the  word  Devadatta. 
AGNIDATTA.      (See  under  GWASARMA). 
AGNIDHARA  TIRTHA.     This  is  the  name  of  a  sacred 

place  near  Gautamavana.  (See  Sloka    146,  Chapter  84, 
Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

1.  Genealogy.    Descended     from    Visnu     thus  :  Visnu- 
Brahma-Marici-Kasyapa-  Vivasvan  -  Vaivasvatamanu- 

2.  Birth.     Priyavrata,  son  of  Vaivasvatamanu,  married 
Barhismati,  daughter  of  Visvakarma.  Agnldhra  was  one 
of  their  ten    sons.    The  other  nine  sons   were  :  Idhma- 
jihva,    Yajnabahu,     Mahavlra,    Hiranyaretas,    Ghrta- 
prstha,    Sava,     Medhatithi,    Vitihotra    and    Kavi.    A 
daughter  also  was  born  to  Priyavrata    and  Barhismati 
named   Orjjasvatl.    Sukra   married   her  and  Devayam 
was  their  daughter. 

3)  Married  life.     Agnldhra  married  a    nymph    named 
Purvacitti.    They   had    nine    children  :   Nabhi,    Kirh- 
purusa,  Hari,    Ilavrata,    Ramyaka,    Hirancaya,  Kuru, 
Bhadrasva,  and  Ketumala.  It  was  from  this  Kuru  that 
the  Kuru  Varhsa  began. 

4)  Other  incidents.      (1)  Agnldhra  ruled   over   Jambu- 
dvipa  for  a  long  time.    (Devi  Bhagavata,  SkandhaS). 

(2)  While  he  was  the  ruler  of  Jambudvlpa  Agnldhra 
once  went  into  a  cave  and  did  hard  tapas  there  with- 
out eating  any  food.  Brahma  then  sent  a  beautiful 
nymph  (Apsara  maiden)  to  him  to  tempt  him  and 
thwart  his  tapas.  Agnldhra  fell  a  victim  to  the  tempta- 
tion. His  penance  was  shaken  by  that  nymph  named 
Vipracitti.  He  married  her.  (Bhagavata,  Skandha  5, 
Chapter  2). 

AGNIHOTRA(M).     This  is  a  sacrifice  offered  to    Agni- 
deva.  This  has  two   parts,  nitya  and  Kamya. 


\ti\      A    demon    (R&ksasa)    who    was     a    clOM 

.,,1  .,,,,1    ,,|.r.n.  i  .,1   K.iv.nui     K.iin.i    kill.d    liiin    in 
,|,,  ,|  In  ,  ballle  willi  Havana. 

\i.Mki\i  \K  \      \n  .  puhei  ..i  i  Subrahmanya, 

AUMI.OlsV       0,,e     ol       Ilir     devalokas      situated     oil     Ihe 

lummit  oi  Mount    M.ili.uiK-m.  The.--  .or  ..  Fev  .>ih--r 

,1,  \.ilokas    on    ill.      .inn      inouniam.     Tin  \     kit   :    I  i"l   I 

lok.i.   Yamaloka,  Sivaloka  or,    Saiyaloka    and 
Devi  I  '.I  i 

\i  ,\l  \l  \\         Name    ol    ODQ   Aimi. 

ACMMI  I  K  \        I  h,     lui  .....     K.ihde,.'.     I'l.iy,     Mala 

vika.'Min.ina.  Mi-    u...    a    Muf,     "I    ill--   Sum-,.!     dvn 
and    Ilir  son  ..I    I'nssanniia.    Kfilidasa'     pla)   d.-.ils  with 

il,,    ,,,.,,,  i  .,  .,-  ,i    Malavika   and   ALMiiimna. 

\i.\l\IUKII  \         \n     Va.ra. 

|      i  ||,.    „  ,1.  ,1    I.  oi,  i     \  i  .nil     in     tins 

Oltlei  x.  ,,,  Hi.  ilnn.  i  -M.iii.  i-  Kasyapa  -Smapadma- 

Until.    Surap.idm.'.  married  Maya's  daughter  and 

Aniinuukli.i  was  I'  n1"    as   their    son.    In    ilu-    li.uil.    IH-I 
WITH    ill.    .1    .1     .n-,d    ill-'  latter  ueie  d-  I    aled  .in-1 
,„,,.,,!    ||,,  m     ought     li.'ll'  i    ni   I'    |,lhe    IHW.T  world)  . 
ls.i-.\apa     m.niied   his  danv.hlcr.    Sin.  r.  i.    Tliev      li.i.l      \X 

children  ;  the]    wew  :  Surapadma,    Smiink.i.    Sunii., 

v.ikir.i.      r.n.iUasilia,     Comnkli.i.    .ind    Aj.mmkhi.  Suia- 

padiu.i  in.  ii  i  H  -d  Maya's  daughter.  Agnimukhl  wai  <>m- 
ol'  tin  -n    lour   sons,    llic  oilier   llucc    beim;     ithann  ;,>|,,i, 
\  ..  H.  il>.  dm     .ind     Ilirama.      iSk.nula      I'niana,    Asura- 
In  llu-  Sk.ind.i    I'm.  in.  i  111,  -iv  i,  .1  vi\id   descrip- 
ti-iii  of    lh<'    v.di.inl   \v.i\     in   \vliii-li   .\:',iiiiiinkli 
in  III.-   bank-  between    tin-  dcv.  is  .in.l  .r  HI., 
\(.\ll'\.      Sou   ol    a     llrahniin    n.  nil.  -d    V'.d.inidlii.    On    6 
IIM      g.iudli.iiN.i     in  .o.l,  us    n.inu-d     I'ramodiiii,    Sir  .d.i. 
Susv.ira,     Snl  n.  i    .ind   C.uulriku  I'rll     in   1-ivr  with   him 
.nul    ii-ipu-st.-il     him     to  marry    tlu-m.    Ucin^   a    strict 

Hi.  ilnn  n  .111:1     V,m|>.i    Was    olli-udi-d  li\    lliis    ic.|n.-sl   .nul 
soli,  •ciii  Mil  il»  in   .ind  linncd  tin-in   into   lirnds.    Veda-' 
iiidln  |>ili.  d  tin  -in  and  souidn  ill.-  a.K  tee  »l   iag«  l.»iua:..i 
as  to  hou  ili.iM-  iinlorlunati-  maidens  could  In-  ivd-vnit  d 
lioiu   ilu-    curMi     \.i-ording     to   I  ad\  i.  -•    the 

li\,  in.  lid,  us  li.itheil  in  llu-  I'oK  lake  ol  l'i  a\  .i|;alirlha 
Hlld  regained  their  .ni;;  i'orins.  Then  .ilieyin-;  llic 
inslnu  lions  -,l  sai--e  l.oiu.isa  Ai;nipa  married  all  these 
h\e  j'.indh.nx.i  maidens.  (Chapters  I'2H  and  129, 
Ull.ii  ikh.i  ,l.i.  r.ulin.i  I'm.  in.  0. 

AGNIPRAVBSAfM).    Batenng  iin--    in  the   Ynddh.i- 

k.nul.i  ol  the  K.nn.u  i.ia,  \  .ilmiki  has  deserihed  Sit.Vs 
eui,  rin.n  and  standinii;  in  lire  (Agnipravelam)  as  a 
ie-,i  ol  hei  purity.  Though  R.nn.i  recovered  Sita  I'roui 
R.i\aiia.  he  \\anted  to  accept  her  as  his  wile  only  alter 
her  pm  it\  had  lieen  I,  .ted  and  proved,.  So  In-decided  to 
h-si  her  1>\  lue  l  v-  Ivs.ina).  Sil.i  shed  tears  at  th<- 

ilionxhl  thai  her  luisliand  donliled  her  .h.isin\. 
Laksmana.  ai  Kama's  hiddi;  le  a  pyre.  SH.I 

jumped  into  il  alter  |  ,-.i\  iu>-,  to  die  gods.  She  remained 
me.,  orehed  liy  the  lire  .Mid  Rftma  gladly  received  her 
on,  e  more  as  his  \\  il'c. 


.  Atacredplace(Pur>y« 

011  the  banks  of  llic  river  Narmada.  Main  scholars 
idenuK  this  uith  the  pl.t,,-  MahcSvaram.  (Sloka  i'.. 
(  h.ipter  I  i,  Annsas.ui.i  1'arva,  M.B.)  . 

l'l  K  U  \    M 

I  Gfiifinl  infoiniiitioii.  This  is  one  ol  the  eighteen 
I'm.  in.  i.  a-eiilud  U>  Vyftsa.  It  is  believed  that  this 
Pnrana  \  iall\  SMVCII  oi.illx  ,asad\iee)  by  .\mii- 

16  AGNISOMA  (S) 

di-v.i    to    many    lagCI,   -lev.i  .  and  Saj;e  Vasisjlia.  It  is   a 

VU(    e pn-li,  n-.ive    \vorkili.ihii",   \\ilh   ,  ver\-  subject  of 

inip-ii  Ian-  e.  To  ;M\e  a  i  ,-p\  ol  [his  book  lo  a  good 
Ilialimin  on  ilu  I  nil  Moon  day  in  the  month  of 
Mai:;.-  Sirsa  is  suppo-.i-d  lo  be  a  hi;;hly  \-irluous  and 
in,  i  ilorious  d,  .  ,1 

2)   Cunlnih.      Tin-,     large    I'm.ii.ia  consists    ol' about    420 

chapters,  h  -I,  .il.  in  with  ihe  following  subjects: 

The   Datfvatirai  ol    .\l.ih.i\iM.m   ;  K.'n  ;     Mah.i- 

bhaiaia;  i  nl,  -.  and  iiijunelions  re  la  I  int.;  lo  the  worship  ol 

various  godi   (devapQj&vidhis)  ;  in.'.t.illaiion   of  idols  in 

temples   (devat&pratlltha);  S\  ;  aslrol.. 
an  •liileeliire     and     s-  iilplnn- ;       Aynrv.di  ;     \i:       .n.l\.i 
(treatment  ol  poison';  li-om  Snak,  iiiie  ,-le.)    ;  ihe  princi- 
ples    of   die     drama     (    and    ol  her  allied  arls  ; 

•  'i  ipeei  Ii   and   .ill  alaml.  MM  .    m  general  ;  and 

phy.siolony    of  the    human    bodv.    All    these 
trealed  in   a  detailed   and  ifi  inner. 

AGNll'UK^A.      A   KiiiK    of   ihe  Solar    dynasty    (Surya- 
\  .'lii-'.al  . 

I   i    '  .\;;nipm  n.i    \vas    d.-s,  ended   liom     N'isnu 

in     the     lollouin  :  lirahm.t  -  Mariei  -  Rasyapa- 

Vivasvan  -  VaiVASVatamanU •  Iksvaku-Yikuksi  -  Sas.ida- 
l'ui.iii|:  i  K  iknlsih.i. \iunas  -  lYlliiil.V'.van-l'ra.sen.ijil- 
Yuvaniivan  -  Mandliala  -  I'uriikuisa  -  'J'ra.sadasyu- 

Anaranya  -  AryaivS  Vt  umanas-Sutanva-Traiyyaru^a- 

Sai\  a\  raia  -  Tri-'..n'iku  I  l.i;-r'.e.iudra  -\  a- 1  larila- 
(lurtcil-  Snd,-\  a-lih.n  nka-H.ihuka  -  Sa  ,  .in.nijas- 

Aiiisimi  in   I  )il!|>  i       l!li.i".iraih,i  Srul  .iii.:da-Sindlind\  ipa- 
Ayulayus-Riupai  na    -    Sar\'.ikam.i  -  Milra- 
s.ikha-Kahn.i    Lp&ds         A-'mak.i    -    Mfdaka-Kh  > 
l)ii-.-,li.<b.iliii  K.ndin    \ja   -   I)  i-'.aralh.i  -Sri    Ram.       . 
Adili-Nisadha-Nahhas-l'iindanka-K.:.;, -madhauv.-.  -I  '. 
lllka  -  K  ksa  -  I'.n'ix  .Ura  -  U  ilaA'nui  . -h.i- 

Kli.iH.ina  -  N'idhrii  -  1  liraiu  an  ibha  -  I'usya-   Dhriiva  - 
Sudaiiana   -   Agnipurna.      A^nipurna    had   l\\-o  deseen-      Sij;lira  and     Maru    and     with    ihein    th. 
\  .nil-  a  came  lo  aj^  end. 

ACNISAMUHAN  A.    A  Ki,,-  ofthe  Solar  dynaity. 

(.'<-/(,-<j/i).i.M-.      \'isnu-l5rahm..  M.nui   Is  i- yapa-N    - 

Vaivasvatamanu  -  Iksvaku  -  Niini-Janaka  -  Nan-b. 

dliaiia-Snkeln  l>e\. iiai.'  Hrhaddhria  -  Mah.ivira-1  )hrti- 
Ki-ln-I  l.n\  as\a  Ni.n  n-l'iatisN  aka  -  Kraluralha  -  1>.  \.< 
midlia-\'idhrta-Mah.idhrti-Krliraia-Mah.i:oni  i-S\arna- 
romaprastharoma  •  Snad!i\aja  -  Knrndluaja  -  Dliarma- 
dhvaja  -  1st  ladhx  aja  -  Sakr  id\  umna-Suci- 
N'anadhvaja  -  Urjjakclu  -  Aja-Kunijit  -  Arislaiiemi- 
Krtayils-Supru-;vaka-(;iii-ar.uha-K.sem.ipi  -  I  lomaialha- 

Satyaratha-Gurunandana-Upagupu  \-Miis.n i>l>l, 

There  au-  no  oilier  rel'eivnees  to  this  Isini;  ol' the  S  ilar 
dynaslN  in  the  I'm-'mas. 

\IINISAR\I  A.     (Sec  ihe  won!  \  IDYUDDYOTA) . 
AdNlSIKHA.     Father  of  Varanu  i.  He  is  also  known  by 
the  name    Somad.uta.   (Kathisaritslgara-Kath&pltha- 

lambaka-l'   I.  See  also  llie   wotd  (U^'  \\'AI<  \' 
(\ONlSlRATlRTOA,      A  holy    place  on  liu- plains  ofthe 

river,  N'amuna.  At ;jmi;.'s  brolher,   Sahade\a,  pcrlonni-il 

i  \.i  '..i    .11   I  In;   plaee.   ,  M.l>  .    X'ana   I'arva,  ChaptCl    90). 
\t;.MSOMA.     A  deity  born   of  the   imii>ii  ol'  two   devas, 

Aj;iiideva  and  Somadeva.   lie    is   one  ol'   the    .lev. is  who 

receive  the  havis  (oblations)   poured   into  the  sacrificial 

lire    in   a  homa. 
AGNISOMA(S).      A>j;ni  and   Soina.     Ai;ni  had    Iwo    sons 

by  llis  third    wile  Hhanu     ^aN  >   ,  ailed  Nisal.  They  were 



Agni  and  Soma.  These  two  sons  were  collectively  called 

AGNlSAUCA(M),  A  cloak  witli  magical  propertied 
given  lo  .Nala  by  ilic  serpent,  Karko(aka.  After  .separat- 
ing himself  from  Damayanti,  Nala  was  wandering  in 
the  lorrsl.  Then  he  was  bitten  by  (lie  poisonous  serpcnl, 
Karkolaka.  'I  hi-  deformed  Nala  beyond  rec  ognil  ion. 
'I'lien  ihe  lerpenl  r-ave  him  this  shawl  (Agnisaura) . 
Anyliody  who  wore  thai  clo;'k  would  regain  his  original 
lot  in  and  colour.  I  Ka  I  ha1, at  i  l>..vai  a-Alankaravali-lain- 
baka-Taranga  6). 

AGNI8THALI.     (See  the  word  PURtJRAVAS), 

A(;,\TSTIIAMBilA(M)      A  mantra  (hat  will     reduce 

ihe  burning    powi  I   of  Agni. 



\)  Genealogy,  \  >•  .<  >  ndcd  from  Vi$nu  in  this  order: — 
Vi:;nn-Svayambhuvamanu  -  Uttanapada-Dhruva-Srsti- 

2)  Ilirth.  '1'en  good  sons  were  born  to  Manu  by  his  wife, 
Nadvala  a-id  Agnistu  was  one  of  them.  The  otln  r  nine 
sons  were:  Oru,  Puru,  Satadyumna,  Tapasvi,  Satyavak, 
Kavi,  Aliratra,  Sudyumna  and  Atimanyu.  (Agni 
Purana,  Chapter  18) . 

AGNISVATTA.  One  of  the  seven  Pi trs.  'lln  other  six 
Pitrs  arc  :  Vairaja,  Garhapatya,  Somapa,  Eka6r»ga, 
Caturveda  and  Kala.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  1 1 , 
Verses  44,  45  and  46). 

AGNIVKSA.  A  Sage.  He  was  the  preceptor  of  Drona 
and  Drupada.  It  is  believed  that  he  learned  archery 
and  the  military  arts  from  Sage  Agastya.  Drona  had 
the  greatest  respect  for  this  guru,  Agnivcia.  He 
was  a  master  in  the  use  of  all  weapons.  There  are  refer- 
ences to  this  in  Chapter  139,  Adi  Parva  of  the  Maha- 

AGRAHA.  The  name  of  an  Agni,  a  son  of  the  Agni 
named  lilianu.  Bhanu  married  Supraja,  daughter  of 
the  sun  and  Agraha  was  one  of  the  six  children  born  to 
them.  In  the  Caturmasikayajfia  Agraha  receives  eight 
kinds  of  havis  (Oblations) .  ( M.B.,  Vana  Parva, 
Chapter  221). 

AGRAfcJI.  The  name  of  an  Agni.  He  was  the  fifth  son 
of  the  Agni  named  Bhanu  and  his  wife,  Nisadevi. 
(M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  221,Slokas  15  to  22). 

AGRASANDHANl.  The  name  of  the  book  which  Yama 
'the  God  of  Death — Kala)  keeps  in  which  all  the 
virtuous  and  sinful  actions  of  men  arc  recorded. 

AGRAYAtfl.  One  of  the  hundred  sons  of  Dhrtarastra.  He 
is  also  known  by  the  name,  Anuyayl.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  116,  Verse  11). 

AHA  I.  One  of  the  astavasus.  His  father  was  Dharma 
and  mother,  Ratidcvi.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Slokas  1 7  to 
20,  Chapter  66). 

AHA  II  (AIIAIJ).  A  sacred  pond.  If  one  bathes  in  it  he 
will  go  to  the  land  of  the  Sun.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva, 
Sloka  100,  Chapter  83). 

AHA  III.  One  born  of  the  dynasty  of  demons  (asura- 
vamSa).  (Sec  under  Heti,  the  genealogy  chart  of  the 
demon  dynasty). 

AHARA.  A  son  born  of  Danu  to  Kasyapa.  (M.B.,  Adi 
Parva,  Sloka  25,  Chapter  65). 

AHALYA.  Turned  into  stone  by  the  curse  of  her  hus- 
band, Gautama.  Ahalya  was  a  princess  of  the  Puru 

1)  Genealogy.  Descended  in  order  Iroin  Vi:.:nu  a:,  follows: 
Krahma-Atri-Candia-Kiidha  -  I'm  uravas-Ayns-Nah' 
Yayati-Purn-.Janam<  j»ya  -  IVarinva  •  I'lavira-iNaniasyn- 
Vllabhaya  -  Sundu  -  Uahuvidha  -  Sam/. Hi  -  Kahovadi- 
Kaudra^  -  Dufyantfl  Kli.irata- 
Arka-Bharinya''.va-r,iin  ala-Mudgala- Ahalya. 

2)  How  Ahalya  got  a  curse  and  became  a  ttotie.  The  ;,ioiy 
of  how  Ahalya  was  cursed  by  her,  <ianlania, 
and  was  Inrned  inlo  a  ftOtie  i:.  lolil  in  dild  M  Q( 
in  (lilli-renl  |.ui.ina',.  'I  he  Inflowing  is  ihe  veision  in  llie 
Valrnlki  Ramayana.  When  Vi:',vainilia  wa:,  lal  n  ;•,  bai  I. 
Rama  and  l.aksinai.ia  liom  ih,  fore*  lo  ihe  pala- .  »l 
Janaka  they  came  across  an  .TSrarna  on  (heir  way.  Giving 
delails  about  that  asraina  Vi:'.vainilra  lold  lh>  |irmce» 
thus  :  "This  is  ihe  ai'rarnawhere  the  sage,  Gautama,  was 
living  with  his  wile,  Ahalyfi.  Indra  fell  in  love  with  the 
beautiful  Ahalya  and  while  the  sage  wa:.  OUI  lor  bathing 
Indra  entered  tl.  la  in  (In  I  ol  the  sage 

himself  and  took  bed  with  her.  But  before  Indra  could 
get  out  Gautama  himself  came  to  tin   a::/ama  arid  en- 
raged at  what  he  saw,  cursed  them  both.   India  w. 
lose  his  testicles  and  Ahalya  was  to  turn  inlo  a  stone. 
But  taking  pity  on  her  the  sage  declared  that  she  would 
take  her  original  form  the  moment  Rama  of  trcta  yuga 
came  to  that  place  and  touched  the  MOD.    by  hi ,  foot. 
Testiclclcss  Indra  went  to  devaloka  and  there  his   friends 
feeling  sorry  for  him,  substituted  a  goat's  testicle  and 
got  him  to  normal."  While  VirfvSmitra  was  talking  to 
the  princes,  Sri  Rama's  foot  touched  the  stone  and  Ahalya 
stood  up  in  all  beauty.  Ahalya  and  Gautama  lived  in 
the  same  asrama  again  for  another  long  period. 
In  Kathasaritsagara  this  story  is  told  in  a  slightly  diffe- 
rent yet  more  interesting  way.  As  soon  as  Gautama 
entered  the  asrama  Indra  turned  himself  into-  a  cat. 
Angrily  the  sage  fjue;,tioned  Ahalya,  "who  was  standing 
here  when  I  came  in  ':'"  Ahalya  replied,  "M.'.o  ihiyo  khu 
majjara"  (Ksah  sthitah  khalu  marjjarah).  It  was  a  cat 
which  was  standing  there.    Here  Ahalya  used  a  pun  on 
the  word  'majjara'  and  tried  lo  be   'Majjara'  is 
the  Prakrit  form  of  the  word  'marjjarah'  which  means  cat. 
But  'majjara'   has  another  meaning  also,    (ma  — mine 
jara- lover  i.e.  majjara -my    lover).  So  Ahalya  did  not 
lie   to   her   husband.  (Kathasaritsagara,  Lavanakalam- 

3)  How  Ahalya  happened  to  bring  u/j  Ihe  mighty  monkeys,  Bali 
and  Sugriva.  Once  Aruna,  the  charioteer  of  SQrya  (the 
Sun)  went  to  devaloka  to  sec  the  dance  of  the  celestial 
maidens  there.  Since  there  was  no  admission  to  the  <!:• 
for  men  Aruna  disguised  himself  as  Amu 
admission;  seeing  the  beautiful  form  of  ArunidevI  Indra 
fell  in  love  with  her  and  that  night  a  child  was  born  to 
Indra  by  her.  On  the  advice  of  Indra  ArunidevI  took  the 
child  to  Ahalya  before  daybreak  and  left  it  there  to  be 
looked  after  by  her.  It  was  this  child  which  later  on 
became  the  famous  Bali. 

Aruna  went  a  bit  late  that  morning  to  his  master,  the 
Sun.  The  latter  wanted  an  explanation  and  Aruna  told 
him  what  had  happened.  The  Sun  then  asked  Aruna  to 
become  ArunidevI  again  and  seeing  ihe  enchanting  figure 
the  Sun  also  got  a  child  of  her.  Tin  ,  <  hild  also  was  taken 
to  Ahalya  and  it  was  this  child  ihai  lai<  r  on  beramc  the 
famous  Sugriva. 
AHALYAlIRADA(M).  A  sacred  pond  in  the  tapovana 




(precincts  of  an  asrama)  of  Gautama  Rsi.  It  is  believed 
that  one  would  go  to  heaven  if  one  bathes  in  it. 
A1IARA.  A  son  born  of  Danu    to   Kasyapa.   (M.B.,  Adi 

Parva,   Sloka  25,  Chapter  65). 

AHICCHATRA.  This  was  the  capital  of  the  stete  Ahi- 
rchatra  which  Drona  got  from  Drupada,  the  King  of 

AHICCHATRA (M).  A  state  under  the  sovereignty  of 
King  Pancala.  On  the  completion  of  his  studies  under 
Drona  Arjuna  brought  before  his  preceptor  King  Dru- 
pada as  a  captive  in  discharge  of  the  duty  he  owed  to 
him  as  his  master.  Drupada  then  gave  the  state_  of 
Ahicchatra  to  Drona  and  got  hi.s  release.  (M.B.,  Adi 
Parva,  Slokas  73  to '76,  Chapter  137). 
AHIldSA.  Non-injury.  There  are  opinions  both  in  favour 
of  and  against  Ahimsa  in  the  puranas.  Sukracarya  ex- 
tol.' the  importance  of  Ahimsa  to  the  asuras  (demons) 
thus  : 

Bho  !  Devaripavah  satyam 
Bravlmi  bhavatam  hitam 
Ahimsa  paramo  dharmo 
Hantavya  hyatatayinah 
Dai  Si  tarn  himsanam  pasoh 
Jihvasvadaparaih  Kama — 
Mahimsaiva  para  mata. 

"Oh,  foes  of  the  devas,  I  shall  tell  you  the  truth  which  is 
good  for  you.  Non-injury  to  any  living  being  is  the  most 
righteous  thing.  Do  not  molest  even  those  who  come  to 
kill  you.  Even  that  act  would  be  'hirhsa'  (injury).  It 
was  those  brahmins  who  were  attached  to  worldly  plea- 
sures and  addicted  to  overeating  that  enjoined  in  the 
Vedas  that  hirhsa  is  permissible  for  yagas."  (Devi  Bhaga- 
vata,  Skanda  4).  Markandeya  Muni  (sage)  says  thus  : 
"Why  should  I  mind  the  innumerable  killings  going  on 
unnoticed  in  this  world  full  of  life.  People  of  old  speak 
very  sacredly  about  Ahirhsa.  But  O  best  of  brahmins, 
who  can  live  in  this  world  without  injury  to  another 
life  ?"  (M.B.,  Aranya  Parva,  Slokas  32  &  33,  Chapter 
AHIRATHA.  A  King  of  the  Puru  dynasty.  (See  under 

Puiu  vamsa). 

AHIRBUDHNYA.  One  of  the  sons  of  Visvakarma.  Five 
sons  and  one  daughter  were  born  to  Visvakarma  of  his 
wife  Surabhi.  They  were  Ajaikapat,  Ahirbudhnya, 
Tvasfa,  Rudra,  Barhismati  and  Samjna.  (See  under 
genealogy  of  Visvakarma). 
AHITA.  A  river  of  ancient  Bharata.  (M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva, 

Sloka  21,  Chapter  9). 

AHORATRA(M).    (See  under  Kalamana). 
AHOVIRA.  A  sage  who  adhered  strictly  to  the  injunctions 
associated  with  the  Yanaprastha  stage  of  life.    (M.B., 
Sand   Paiva,  Sloka    17,   Chapter   144). 
AI     ($).     This  diphthong  means  a  female  sage   (yogini) 
according  to  the  Agni  Purana     (Chapter  348  of  Agni 

AIKSVAKI.  Wife  of  Suhotra  who  was  a  son  of  Emperor, 
Bhumanyu.  Suhotra  had  three  sons  by  Aiksvaki.  They 
were  Ajamldha,  Sumldha  and  Purumidha.  (See  Chapter 
94  of  Adi  Parva  of  the  M.B.). 

AILA  I.     Son  of  Ila;  Pururavas.    (See  under  Ila). 
AILA  II.     A  member  of  the  court  of  Yamaraja.  (Sec  £loka 
16,  Chapter  8,  Sabha  Parva,  M.B.).  In  Sloka  65,  Chap- 
ter 115  of  Anusasana  Parva,  it  is  said  that  he  never  ate 
non-vegetarian  food  in  his  life. 

AINDAVA.      (See      paragraph      13    under     the     word 

AIRAVATA  I.     A  large  elephant,  son  of  Iravatl. 

1 )  Genealogy.     Descended  from  Visnu  in  this  order  :• — 
Visnu  -  Brahma  -  Kaiyapa  -  Bhadramata-Iravatl-Aira- 
vata.  Kasyapa  married  Daksa's  daughter,  Krodhavasa 
who  bore  him  ten  daughters.  They  were  :     Mrgi,  Mrga- 
manda,   Harl,   Bhadramata,    Matarigl,    Sarduli,    Sveta, 
Surabhi,  Sarasa  and  Kadru.  Of  these  Bhadramata  had 
a  daughter  named  IravaiT    and    Airavata  was  her  son. 
Airavata  was  not   human   in   shape;  he  was  a  large  ele- 
phant.  (See  Sarga  14,   Aranyakanda,  Ramayana). 

2)  Indra? s  Vahana.     I ndra  made  Airavata  his  conveyance 
(vahana).  Indra  was  Kaiyapa's  son  by  Aditi.  Airavata 
also    was    descended   from     Kasyapa.    So    Indra    took 
Airavata  as  his  vahana. 

3)  Airavata  caused  the  churning  of  the  ocean  of  Milk.     There 
is  a  story  of  how  Airavata  was  responsible  for  the  churn- 
ing   of  the    milk-ocean    (Ksirabdhi-mathanam).  Once 
some  maidens  of  devaloka  presented  a  garland  of  flowers 
to  sage  Durvasas.  When  Durvasas  visited  Indra's  court 
he  gave  that  garland  to  Indra.  Indra  put  it  on  the  tusks 
of  his  vahana,  Airavata.  The  fragrance  of  the  flowers 
attracted  a  swarm  of  bees  which  became  an  intolerable 
nuisance  to  Airavata.  So  Airavata  tore  the  garland  off 
his  tusks  and  hurled  it  away.  When  Durvasas  heard 
this,  he  took  it  as  an  insult.   In  his  anger  he  cursed  all  the 
gods — the  curse  was  that  all  gods  should  become  subject 
to  old  age  and  the  decrepitude  and  infirmities  of  old  age. 
But  though  Durvasas  cursed  the  gods,  he  also  prescribed 
a  remedy.  The  gods  could  redeem  themselves  from  the 
curse  by  drinking  Amrtam  obtained  from  the  ocean  of 
Milk  (Mahavisnu  lies  on  the  serpent,  Sesa  on  this  ocean). 
The  curse  began  to  operate  and  the  gods  lost  their  peren- 
nial youth.     The  gods  then  befriended  the  Asuras  and 
with  their  help  they  churned  the  ocean  of  Milk.  They 
got  the  nectar   (Amrtam),  drank  it  and  regained  their 
youth.    (See  under  the  word  AMRTAM). 

4)  There  is  another  story  about  Airavata — A  story  of 
.    how  he  also  rose  out  of  the  ocean  of  Milk.  It  is  said  that 

when  the  devas  and  asuras  churned  the  ocean  of  Milk, 
Airavata  also  came  up  along  with  the  other  good  things. 
This  story  is  narrated  in  the  18th  Chapter  of  Adi  Parva 
of  the  Mahabharata.  The  explanation  given  is  that  when 
Durvasas  cursed  the  gods,  Airavata  was  oppressed  with 
a  sense  of  guilt  because  he  was  responsible  for  the  curse. 
So  he  took  refuge  in  the  ocean  of  Milk  and  there  started 
propitiating  Mahavisnu.  There  is  however  no  warrant 
for  such  an  explanation  in  the  puranas.  But  the  expla- 
nation sounds  plausible  because  it  explains  the  absence 
of  Airavata  during  the  interval  between  Durvasas's 
curse  and  the  churning  of  the  sea.  Air?.vata  is  represented 
as  a  white  elephant.  It  is  probable  that  he  became  white 
after  his  long  residence  in  the  ocean  of  Milk.  This  lends 
some  additional  plausibility  to  the  above  explanation. 

5)  Airavata,  the  Lord  of  the  elephant.     In  the  Visnu  Purana 
we  are  told  how  Airavata  was  made  the  chief  of  all  ele- 
phants. When  the  Maharsis  had  crowned  Prthu  as  the 
sovereign  King,    Brahma  gave    new  posts  of  honour  to 
many  of  the  devas.  He  made  SOMA  (Moon)  the  lord 
of  the  Stars  and  Planets,  of  Brahmins,  Yajfias  and  herbs. 
Kubera  was  made  the  overlord  of  all  Kings;  Varuna 
was  made  the  master  of  the  seas  and  all  water;  Visnu, 

the  lord  of  the  Adityas  and  Pavaka  (Fire)  the  lord  of 


the  Vasus.  Along  with  these  Brahma  made  Airavata  the 
lord  of  all  elephants.    (Chapter  22,  Visnu  Purana). 

6 )  The  breaking  of  Airavata' s  tusks.     There  is  a  story  oi'how 
the  tusks  of  Airavata  were  broken  narrated  in  the  Asura- 
kanda    of  Skanda    Purana.  Once    an    asura    (demon) 
named  Surapadma  attacked  devaloka.  A  fierce  battle 
ensued  between  the  gods  and  asuras.  In  the  course  of 
this  battle,  Jayanta,  Indra's  son,  was  hit  by  an  arrow 
and  at  once   he  fell  dead.  Enraged   by  this  Airavata 
rushed    at    Surapadma's    chariot    and    shattered    it  to 
pieces.  Airavata  then  attacked  Surapadma  who  broke  his 
tusks  and  hurled  him  down  to  the  earth.    Airavata  lay 
paralysed  for  a  long  time;  then  he  got  up,  retired  to  a 
forest  arid  prayed  to  Lord  Siva.  With  the  grace  of  Siva 
Airavata  regained  his  lost  tusks  and  was  able  to  return 
to    devaloka. 

7)  Other  details  about  Airavata.      (1)   There   is  a   belief 
that  Airavata  is  one  of  the  eight  elephants  guarding  the 
eight  zones  of  the  universe.  These  eight  elephants  are 
called  the  Astadiggajas.  Airavata  is  supposed  to  guard 
the    eastern     zone.      (Chapter     66,  Adi  Parva,  Maha- 
bharata ) . 

(2 )  Airavata  and  three  other  diggajas  are  supposed  to 
reside  in  Puskara  Island.  (Chapter  12,  Bhisma  Parva, 

AIRAVATA  II.  Name  of  a  serpent  born  to  Kasyapa  and 
his  wife  Kadru.  This  is  mentioned  in  Sloka  5,  Chapter 
35,  Adi  Parva  of  the  Mahabharata.  Arjuna's  father-in- 
law  and  Ulupi's  father,  Kauravya  belonged  to  the  family 
of  this  serpent.  (See  Sloka  18,  Chapter  213,  Adi 
Parva ) . 

AIRAVATA.  An  asura  who  was  killed  by  Sri  Krsna. 
(See  Chapter  38,  Sabha  Parva,  Mahabharata). 

AIRAVATAGHATTA.  Name  of  a  place  near  the  sea- 
shore, lying  to  the  north  of  the  mountain,  Srtigavan. 
(See  Sloka  37,  Chapter  6,  Bhisma  Parva). 

AISlKAM.  Name  of  a  small  division  of  a  parva  of  the 
Mahabharata.  (See  under  Mahabharata). 

AITAREYA  I.  A  great  scholar  with  profound  knowledge 
of  the  Vedas.  Being  a  non-brahmin  he  was  not  able  to 
learn  the  Vedas  from  a  guru.  In  spite  of  this  handicap 
he  acquired  considerable  scholarship  and  wrote  a  learned 
commentary  on  the  Rgveda.  This  commentary  ranks 
high  among  the  various  commentaries  on  the  Vedas. 

AITAREYA  II.  Son  of  Sage,  Manduki  by  his  first  wife, 
Itara.  Being  the  son  of  Itara  he  came  to  be  called  Aita- 
reya.  As  a  boy  he  was  very  pious  and  used  to  chant  the 
mantra  "Namo  Bhagavate  Vasudevaya"  frequently.  But 
he  was  a  shy  and  silent  boy  and  his  father  mistook  his 
silence  to  be  a  sign  of  stupidity.  Dissatisfied  with  him  and 
being  desirous  of  having  learned  sons,  Manduki  married 
another  woman  named  Piriga  and  had  four  sons  by  her 
who  all  became  very  learned.  Once  Itara  called  her 
son  and  told  him  that  his  father  regarded  him  as  an 
unworthy  son  and  was  often  twitting  her  using  insulting 
words  for  having  given  birth  to  so  unworthy  a  son.  She 
then  told  him  of  her  resolve  to  sacrifice  her  life.  Aita- 
reya  then  made  an  enlightening  discourse  to  her  and 
dissuaded  her  from  her  determination  to  commit  suicide. 
Some  time  later  Lord  Visnu  appeared  before  them  and 
blessed  the  mother  and  son.  On  the  advice  of  Visnu 
Aitareya  participated  in  the  yajna  conducted  by  Hari- 


medhya  at  Kotitirtha  and  there  he  made  a  learned 
speech  on  the  Vedas.  Harimedhya  was  so  pleased  with 
him  that  he  gave  his  daughter  in  marriage  to  him. 
(See  Skanda  Purana,  Chapters  1,  2  and  42). 

AJA  I.     A  king  of  the  Solar  dynasty. 

1)  Genealogy.  PVom  Visnu  were  descended  in  order: 
Brahma,  Marici-Kasyapa-Vivasvan  -  Vaivasvata  -  Iks- 
vaku-Vikuksi  -  Sa^ada  -  Puranjaya  -  Kukutstha  -Anenas- 
PrthulaJva  -  Prasenajit  -  YuvanaSva  -  Mandhata  -  Puru- 
kutsa-Trasadasyu  -  Anaranya  -  AryasVa  -  Vasumanas- 
Sudhanva  -  Traiyaruna  -  Satyavrata  -  TrisaiVku  -  Haris'- 
candra  -  Rohitasva  -  Harita  -  Cuncu  -  Sudeva  -  Bharuka- 
Bahuka  -  Sagara  -  Asamanjas  -  Arhsuman  -  Dilipa  - 
Bhaglratha  -  Srutanabha  -  Sindhudvlpa  -  Ayutayus  - 
Rtuparna  -  Sarvakama  -  Sudasana  -  Mitrasakha  -  Kal- 
masapada  -  Axmaka  -  Mulaka  -  Dilipa  -  Dirghabahu  - 
Raghu  -  Aja  -  Aja's  son  Dasaratha-Dasaratha's  son,  Sri 

M.B.,  Anu::asana  Parva,  Chapter  115,  Verse  75  says  that 
Aja  never  used  to  take  meat. 

AJA  II.  Among  the  different  kinds  of  Rsis  mentioned  by 
Yudhisthira,  we  find  a  class  of  Rsis  called  Ajas.  (M.B., 
Santi  Parva,  Chapter  26).  These  Ajas  had  attained 
Heaven  by  Svadhyaya  (self  discipline)  alone. 

AJA  III.  King  Jahnu  had  a  son  named  Aja.  Uuka  was 
the  son  of  this  Aja.  King  Ugika  prayed  to  Indra  for  a 
son.  Indra  himself  was  born  as  the  son  of  IKika  assum- 
ing the  name  Gadhi.  Satyavati  was  born  as  the  daughter 
of  Gadhi.  She  was  married  to  Rcika.  Para:'urama's 
father,  Jamadagni  was  the  son  of  Rcika.  (M.B.,  Sand 
Parva,  Chapter  49). 

AJA  IV.  By  the  grace  of  Siva  Surabhl  was  able  to  purify 
herself  by  penance.  She  then  gave  birth  to  Aja,  Ekapat, 
Ahirbudhnya,  Tvasta  and  Rudra .  (Agni  Purana,  Chap- 
ter 18). 

AJA  V.  In  the  first  Manvantara*  Svayambhuva,  in  the 
second  Manvantara  Svarocisa  and  in  the  third  Manv- 
antara Uttama,  were  Manus.  To  the  third  Manu, 
Uttama,  were  born  as  sons  Aja,  Para:'u,  Dipta  and 
others.  (Visnu  Purana,  Part  3,  Chapter  1). 
Besides  the  above,  the  term  Aja  has  been  used  to  mean 
Surya,  Siva,  Brahma,  Visnu,  Sri  Krsna  and  Bija  (seed). 

AJAGAVA.  Ajagava  is  a  bow  made  of  the  horns  of  a 
goat  and  a  cow.  Brahmins  tormented  the  right  hand  of 
the  King  Vena.  From  it  the  brilliant  Prthu  who  shone 
brightly  like  the  God  Agni,  appeared  as  the  son  of  Vena. 
At  that  time  the  very  first  Ajagava  bow,  divine  arrows 
and  armours  dropped  from  the  sky.  (Visnu  Purana, 
Part  I,  Chapter  13). 

AJAIKAPAT  I.  He  was  one  of  the  eleven  Rudras,  who 
were  born  to  Sthanudeva,  the  son  of  Brahma.  The  eleven 
Rudras  are : — 

1 .     Mrgavyadha  7.     Dahana 

2-     Nirrti  8.     I^vara 

3.  Ahirbudhnya  9.     Kapali 

4.  Pinaki  10.     Bharga 

5.  Sarpa  11.     Sthanu. 

6.  Ajaikapat 

(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  66,  Verse  2).** 
AJAIKAPAT  II.     Among  the    sons  of  Vi;'vakarma,  we 
find    one     Ajaikapat.  Brahma      created     Vi:',vakarma. 
Vi-svakarma   had   four   sons — Ajaikapat,   Ahirbudhnya, 

*    One  Manvantara  is  a  period  equal  to  4,32o,ojo  human  years  or  equal  to  i/4th  day  of  Brahma. 

*:*  The  names  of  the  Eleven  Rudras  given  in   the   Visnu   Purana,   Part   I,   Chapter  5  are:     Hara,  Bahurupa,  Tryambaka,  Aparajita, 
Vrsakapi,  Sambhu,  Kapardi,  Raivata,  Mrgavyadha,  Sarva,  Kapali.  A  total  number  of  100  Rudras  are  mentioned  in  the  Puranas. 




asta  and  Rudra.  (Visnu  Purana,  Part  I,  Chapter  15 ) . 
This  Ajaikap.u  is  one  of  those  who  are  in-charge  of 
preserving  all  the  gold  in  this  world.  (M.B.,  Udyoga 
Parva,  Chapter  114,  Verse  4). 

AJAKA.     An  Asura. 

Birth.  Ka'.yapa  was  born  the  son  of  Marici,  son  of 
Brahma.  Ka-'.yapa  married  Danu,  one  of  the  daughters 
of  Daksa  and  had  two  sons  by  her.  They  were  Ajaka 
and  Vrsaparva.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65,  Verse 
24;  Chapter  67,  Verse  16). 

AJAKASVA.  A  king  of  the  Puru  Vamsa.  The  mighty 
Jahnu  was  born  to  Ajamldha  by  his  wife  Kesini.  Two 
sons,  Ajakasva  and  BalakasVa  were  born  to  Jahnu. 
Kusika  is  the  son  of  Balakasva.  Kusika  is  the  grand- 
father of  ViSvamitra.  For  genealogy  see  Puru  Vamia. 
(Agni  Purana,  Chapter  278). 

AJAMlDHA  I.     A  famous  king  of  the  Puru  Vamsa. 

1)  Genealogy.     Descended  from  Visnu  in  this  order: — 
Brahma  -  Atri  -  Candra  -  Budha  -  Pururavas  -  Ayus  - 
Nahusa  -  Yayati  -  Puru  -  Janamejaya  -  Pracinva-Mana- 
syu  -  Vltabhaya  -  Sundu  -  Bahuvidha  -  Samyati  -  Raho- 
vadi  -  Bhadras"va  -  Matmara  -  Santurodha  -  Dusyanta  - 

2)  Birth.     Several    dynasties    like  Yadu  Vamsa,  Puru 
Varh;;a  etc.  take  their  origin  from  Yayati.  Dusyanta  be- 
longs to  that  dynasty.  King  Bharata  was  born  as  Dus- 
yanta's  son  by  Sakuntala.  Suhotra  -  Suhota  -  Gaya  - 
Gardda-Suketu  and  Brhatksetra  were    Bharata's    sons. 
Bfhatksetra  had  four  children,  who  were  :  Nara,  Maha- 
vira,  Garga  and  Hasti.  OfthemHasti  had   three   sons: 
Purumldha,  Ajamldha  and    Dvimidha. 

3 )  Other   details.     Ajamldha    had  three  queens — DhQ- 
mini,  Nil!  and  Kesini.  Of  them,  Dhumini  had  a  son, 
Rksa  and  Nili's  son  was  Dusyanta  (This  was  not  Sakun- 
tala's  husband,  Dusyanta)  and  KeSini's  sons  were  Jahnu, 
Praja   and   Rupina.  Paramesti   was   another   name   of 
Kesini.    (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  94,  Verses  30-32; 
Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  2). 

AJAMlDHA  II.  We  come  across  another  Ajamldha  also 
in  the  Lunar  Dynasty.  He  married  Sudeva,  daughter 
of  Vikantha  a  King  of  the  Lunar  Dynasty.  This  Aja- 
mldha had  2400  children  by  his  four  wives,  Kaikey  I, 
Gandharl,  Visala  and  Rksa.  Of  them  Samvarana 
-  married  Tapati,  the  daughter  of  Vivasvan.  See  TapatI 
Samvarana.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  95,  Verses 

AJAMILA.     Ajamila's   story  is  given  in  the  Bhagavata  as 
an  example  to  illustrate  that   even  the  most  wicked  person 
can   attain   Visnupada     (Salvation). 
Ajamila     was    a   Brahmin    who    was    once  sent  by  his 
father  to  the  jungle   to    fetch    samit  (leaves  and   twigs 
to  make  the  sacrificial  fire) .    Ajamila  met  there  a  beauti- 
ful Siidra  woman.    Forgetting  everything,  the  Brahmin 
made  her  his  wife  and     children  were  born  to  them. 
When  that  Brahmin,  who    was  the  very  embodiment  of 
all  vices,  reached  the  age  of  eightyseven,  the  time  came 
for  him  to  die.  Yamadutas     (Agents  of  Yama — the  god 
of  death)  had  arrived.  The    frightened  Ajamila  shouted 
loudly  the  name  of  his  eldsst    son,  'Narayana'.  Hearing 
the  repeated  call  of  his  name    'Narayana',  Mahavisnu 
appeared  there  and  dismissed  the  agents  of  Yama.  From 
that  day  Ajamila  became  a  devotee    of  Visnu  and  did 
penance  on  the  bank  of  the  Ganges  and    after  some  years 
attained      salvation.     (Bhagavata,    Astama    Skandha, 
Chapter  1). 

AJAMUKHA    (AJAVAKTRA).      He   was    one    of  the 

soldiers  in  Skanda's  army.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter 
45,  Verse  75).  In  the    battle  between  Skanda  and  the 
Asuras,  Ajamukha  killed  the  Asura,    Madhu.    (Skanda 
Purana,   Yuddha  Kanda). 

1.  Genealogy.  Descended  from  Visnu  thus  :  Brahma- 

2)  Birth      Long  ago  in  the  battle  between  Devas  and 
Asuras  one  of  the  routed  Asuras  had  fled  to  Patala  (Hell). 
Surasa  was  his  daughter.  Brahma's  grandson,  Kasyapa 
married  Surasa.  She  gave  birth  to  six  children — Surapa- 
dma,  Simhika,  Simhavaktra,  Tarakasura,  Ajamukhl  and 
Gomukha.  The  Asura  woman   Ajamukhl  is  one  of  them. 

3)  Chief  events.      (1)     Marriage    with    Durvasas.  Once 
Surapadma  called  his  two  brothers,  Simhavaktra  and 
Tarakasura  and  ordered  them  to  set  up  two  cities,  one 
to  the  north  and  the  other  to  the  south,  of  Mahameru. 
In  obedience  to  his  elder  brother,  Tarakasura  started 
with  one  half  of  the  army  and  set  up  a  city  to  the  south 
of  Mahameru.  That  city  was  named  Mayapura.  Simha- 
vaktra lived  in  the  city  on  the  northern   side  of  Maha- 
meru. Their  sister  Ajamukhl  went  about  enticing  men  to 
satisfy  her  lustful  passion.  Once,  in  the  course  of  her 
wanderings,  she  met  Durvasas  in  the  Himalayan  valley. 
They  fell  in  love  and  even  married.  The  two  Asuras, 
Ilvala  and  Vatapi  were  born  from   their  union.  They 
insisted  on  sharing  their  father's  achievements  between 
them.  Durvasas  cursed  them  that  they  would  die  at  the 
hands  of  Agastya.    (Skanda  Purana,  Asura  Kanda). 

( 2 )  The  cutting  off  of  Ajamukhfs  hands.  While  wandering 
with  her  lustful  passion,  Ajamukhl  once  went  to  the  Siva 
temple  at  Kasi.  There  she  happened  to  meet  Indra's 
wife,  Sacldevl.  In  order  to  give  her  to  her  brother, 
Surapadma,  Ajamukhl  caught  hold  of  Sacidevi.  Sacl- 
devi  screamed  aloud.  Suddenly  Siva  appeared  there 
with  His  sword.  Even  then  Ajamukhl  refused  to  release 
Sacldevl.  Siva  rescued  Indrani  (Sacldevi)  by  cutting  off 
Ajamukhi's  hands.  Hearing  this,  Surapadma  sent  his 
army  and  imprisoned  the  Devas.  The  imprisoend 

,  Brahma  at  the  instance  of  Surapadma,  restored  Aja- 
mukhi's hands.  Surapadma's  son,  Bhanugopa  fought 
against  the  remaining  Devas  and  defeated  them.  (Skanda 
Purana,  Asura  Kanda). 

AJAMUKHl.     See    AJAMUKHl. 

AJANABHA.  A  mountain.  A  reference  to  this  is  seen  in 
the  M.B.,  Anusasane  Parva,  Chapter  165,  Verse  32. 
Another  name,  Ajanabha  Varsa  for  the  territory  ruled 
over  by  Ajanabha,  is  also  found  in  Bhagavata,  Fifth 
Skandha,  Chapter  1. 

AJARA.  Tapantaka,  the  minister  of  King  Vatsa,  told 
him  the  story  of  a  man  named  Ajara  to  illustrate  the  law 
that  all  people  will  have  to  suffer  the  consequences  of 
their  actions  in  a  previous  birth.  The  story  is  given  be- 

Once  upon  a  time,  there  lived  a  King  named  Vinayasila 
in  Vilasapura,  in  the  city  of  Srikanthanagarl.  After 
some  years,  the  King  was  affected  by  wrinkles  of  old  age. 
A  physician  named  Tarunacandra  came  to  the  palace  to 
cure  the  King  of  his  wrinkles.  "The  King  should  remain 
alone  in  the  interior  of  the  earth  for  full  eight  months. 
He  has  to  use  a  medicine  while  remaining  there.  It 
should  not  even  be  seen  by  anyone  else.  I  myself  am  to 
administer  the  medicine" — This  was  the  physician's 
prescription.  The  King  agreed.  Accordingly  the  King 




and  the  physician  spent  six  months  in  the  interior  of  the 
earth.  After  that  the  physician,  after  a  search,  found  a 
man  who  exactly  resembled  the  King  and  brought  him 
to  the  interior  of  the  earth.  After  two  more  months, 
the  physician  murdered  the  King  and  came  out  with  the 
new  man.  The  people  welcomed  him  with  honour  as 
the  King  who  was  cured  of  his  wrinkles.  This  man  was 
Ajara.  After  some  time,  the  physician  approached 
Ajara  for  his  reward.  Ajara  said:  "It  is  by  my  Karma- 
phala  (consequence  of  my  actions  in  my  previous  birth) 
that  I  have  become  King.  In  my  previous  birth  I  re- 
nounced my  body  after  doing  penance.  According  to  the 
boon  which  God  gave  me  on  that  occasion,  I  have  be- 
come King  in  my  present  birth".  The  physician  returned 
empty-handed.  (Kathasaritsagare,  Ratnaprabha- 
lariibaka,  6th  Taranga). 

AJAVINDU.  He  was  a  King,  born  in  the  dynasty  of  the 
Suviras.  (M.B.,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  74,  Verse  14). 

AJEYA.  He  was  a  King  in  ancient  Bharata.  Ajeya's  name 
is  found  among  the  names  of  the  Kings  mentioned  by 
Sanjaya  to  Dhftarastra.  All  these  Kings  were  mighty 
and  generous  rulers  who  were  the  recipients  of  divine 
arrows.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  1,  Verse  234). 

AJIGARTA  (RClKA).     He  was  a  greedy  Brahmin.    (See 


King  Hariscandra  who  was  distressed  by  having  no 
children,  propitiated  god  Varuna.  Varuna  blessed 
him  saying  that  a  son  would  be  born  to  him.  But 
the  condition  was  that  the  child  should  be  sacrificed 
to  Varuna.  When  the  child  was  born,  Hariscandra  did 
not  like  to  sacrifice  the  boy.  The  sage  Visvamitra  suggest- 
ed that  instead  of  sacrificing  his  own  son  it  would  be 
enough  if  he  bought  another  boy  and  sacrificed  him. 
Accordingly,  Hariscandra  sent  his  minister  to  find  out 
and  purchase  a  Brahmin  boy  for  the  sacrifice.  At  that 
time  there  lived  in  Ayodhya  a  greedy  Brahmin  named 
Ajigarta.  He  had  three  sons.  In  the  course  of  his  search, 
the  minister  came  across  this  needy  Brahmin  and  asked 
him  whether  he  was  willing  to  sell  one  of  his  three  sons. 
He  continued:  "Why  should  you  be  in  this  wretched 
state  of  poverty  and  misery  ?  Sell  one  of  your  sons  and 
you  will  get  100  cows  as  the  price".  The  minister's 
words  and  the  price  offered  for  the  son  made  a  deep 
impression  on  the  Brahmin's  mind.  He  thought: 
"It  is  impossible  for  me  to  earn  100  cows.  Even  if  it  were 
possible  how  long  would  it  take  ?  If  I  sell  him  I  shall 
get  hundred  cows  at  once.  What  a  lucky  chance  !  The 
loss  of  a  son  is  nothing."  So  thinking,  he  sold  his  son 
Sunassepha.  (For  the  rest  of  the  story,  see  the  word 
"Sunassepha".  Devi  Bhagavata,  Skandhas  7,  8). 

AJINA.  1 )  Genealogy  From  Visnu,  Brahma,  Marici, 
Kasyapa,  Vaivasvata,  Uttanapada,  Dhruva,  Srsti,  Ripu, 
Caksusa,  Manu,  Uru,  Ariiga,  Vena,  Prthu,  Antardhana, 
Havirdhana  and  Ajina. 

2)  Birth.  Prthu  had  two  sons,  Antardhana  and  Vadi. 
Antardhana  had  a  son,  Havirdhana,  by  Sikhandini. 
Dhisana,  who  was  born  in  the  Agnikula  became  Havir- 
dhana's  wife.  Six  sons  were  born  to  them,  Pracina- 
barhis,  Sukra,  Gaya,  Krsna,  Vraja  and  Ajina.  (Visnu 
Purana,  Part  I,  Chapter  14). 

AJISAKA.      (See  the  word  (SAKAVARSA). 

AJODARA.  There  was  an  individual  called  Ajodara  in 
Skanda's  army.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  45,  Verse  60 ) . 

AKAMPANA.  (A  mighty  warrior  among  the  demons). 
1 )  Genealogy.  Descended  from  Visnu  in  the  following 

order:  Visnu  -  Brahma  -  Heti  -  VidyukeSa  -  SukeSa 

2)  Other  details.     Sumali  married  Ketumati  and   got 
fourteen  children.  They  were  1 )  Prahasta  2)  Akampana 

3)  Vikata  4)  Kalakamukha  5)  Dhumraksa  6)  Danda 
7)  Suparwa  8)  Samhrada  9)  Prakvata  10)  Bhasakarna 
11)  Veka  12)  Puspotkata  13)  Kaikasi  and  14)  Kumbhi- 
nadi.  Of  these  the  last  four  are  daughters.  Prahasta  was 
one  of  the  ministers  of  Ravana.  The  thirteenth  child 
Kaikasi    was    married    to    Visravas,    son    of  Pulastya. 
Visravas   got   three   sons  and   a   daughter.  They  were 
Ravana,  Kumbhakarna  and  Vibhlsana  and  Surpanakha. 
It  was  Akampana  who  informed  Ravana  that  Rama  and 
Laksmana  had  killed  his  three  allies,  Khara,  Dusana 
and  Trisiras  (Aranya  Kanda,  Valmiki  Ramayana). 

3)  Death.  Akampana  fought  a  fierce  battle  with 
Hanuman  and  in  the  end  Hanuman  plucked  a  big  tree 
and  hit  Akampana  on  the  head  with  it  and  killed  him. 
(Sarga  56,  Yuddha  Kanda  of  Ramayana) 

AKAMPANA  II.  He  was  a  king  who  lived  in  the  Krta- 
yuga.  He  had  a  son  named  Hari  who  was  a  fierce  fighter. 
He  was  killed  in  a  battle  and  the  King  became  much 
depressed.  Narada  consoled  him  with  other  stones  and 
Vyasa  told  this  story  to  Dharmaputra  when  he  found 
the  latter  greatly  dejected  and  gloomy  after  the  great 
battle  was  over.  (Chapter  52,  Drona  Parva  of  M.B. 
also  makes  mention  of  Akampana). 

AKARKKARA.     A   serpent,    son    of  Kadru. 

1 )  Genealogy.     Descended  from  Visnu  in   this  order    : 

2)  Birth.     Kasyapa   married   the    eight   daughters   of 
Daksa   named  Aditi,   Dili,     Danu,     Kalika,      Tamra, 
Krodhavaia,  Manu    and   Anala.  Krodhavaia   got    ten 
sons.  One  of  them  is  Kadru.  Ananta  and  Akarkkara 
were  born  of  Kadru.    (Sloka  16,  Chapter  35,  Adi  Parva, 

AKRODHA.  A  King  of  the  Puru  dynasty.  He  was  born 
to  King  'Ayutanayi'  and  his  Queen,  Kama.  Kama, 
mother  of  Akrodha,  was  the  daughter  of  Prthu^rava. 
(gloka  21,  Chapter  95,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.).  ' 

AKRTA&RAMA.  He  is  one  of  the  few  sannyasins  who 
have  gone  to  heaven  after  completing  the  fourth  a^rama 
of  life  namely,  Sannyasa.  The  Kaurava-Pandava 
battle  was  over.  As  the  eldest,  Dharmaputra  performed 
obsequies  to  all  those  of  his  kith  and  kin  dead  in  the  war. 
He  was  then  met  by  many  sages  including  Vyasa  and 
Narada  who  comforted  him  in  his  bereavement.  When 
Dharmaputra  later  met  Bhisma  the  latter  among  many 
other  stories  told  him  the  story  of  Akrtasrama  also. 
(Sloka  17,  Chapter  244,  Santi  Parva,  M.B.). 


1 )  General  information.  Akrtavrana  was  a  great  sage  of 
erudition  and  was  a  disciple  of  Paraiurama.  He  is  ex- 
tolled in  the  Puranas  and  it  is  said  that  Suta  who  recited 
first  the  story  of  Mahabharata  to  an  assembly  of  sages  in 
the  forest  of  Naimisa  was  a  disciple  of  Akrtavrana. 
(Skandha  12  of  Bhagavata). 

2)  How  he  became  a  disciple  of  Parasurama.  Para-urama 
was  returning  after  obtaining  arrows  from  Lord  Siva 
after  pleasing  him  by  fierce  penance-  He  was  walking 
briskly  through  the  dense  forests  anxious  to  be  at  the  side 
of  his  preceptors  to  get  their  blessings.  As  he  passed  a 
grea  t  cave  he  heard  a  moan  and  on  getting  to  the  site 
of  the  sound  found  a  brahmin  boy  being  attacked  by  a 
tiger.  The  tiger  immediately  fell  dead  by  an  arrow  from 


Paras  urania.  Lo  !^  the  tiger  turned  into  a  gandharva 
freed  now  irom  a  curse  ui  which  he  was  lor  years 
living  as  a  tiger.  The  gandharva  bowed  down  respect- 
fully and  thanked  the  sage  for  giving  him  relief  ;>nd  left 
the  place.  The  brahmin  boy  fell  down  at  the  led  oi 
Para'.urama  and  said,  "Great  Lord,  becau'se  of  you  I 
haw  now  become  Akrtavrana  meaning  one  who  has  not 
received  any  wound.  (Akrta  =  not  having  secured. 
Vraiia=  wound).  I  shall,  thcrelbre,  be  your  djsciple  for- 
ever hereafter".  1'Vom  that  day  onwards  he  never  left 
Parasurama  but  followed  him  as  his  disciple. 
3 )  Other  details.  ( 1 )  In  the  story  of  Mahabharata  we 
find  Akrtavrana  in  several  different  contexts  appearing 
on  behalf  of  Parasurama-  It  was  Akrtavrana  who  told 
Dharmaputra  the  life  and  exploits  of  Parasurama  during 
the  exile  of  the  Pandavas  in  the  forests.  (Chapters  1 15  to 
117,  Vana  Parva,' M.B.). 

(2)  In  Chapter  83  of  Udyoga  Parva  we  read  about 
Akrtavrana  meeting  Sri  Krsna  while  the  latter  was  going 
to    Hastinapura. 

(3)  In  Chapter  173  of  Udyoga  Parva  we  read  about 
Akrtavrana  detailing  the  history  of  the  Kaurava  dynasty 
to    Duryodhana. 

(4)  Akrtavrana  has  played  a  very  important  role  in  the 
story  of  Amba,  daughter  of  the  King  of  Kail.  Amba 
along  with  her  two  sisters,  Ambika  and  Ambalika,  were 
brought  down  to  Hastinapura  by  Bhlsma  for  his  brother 
Vicitravlrya  to  marry.  But  on  knowing  that  Amba  had 
mentally  chosen  Salva  as  her  husband,  Bhlsma  allowed 
her  to  go  back  to  Salva.  But  on  her  return  to  Salva  he 
refused  to  accept  her  and  she  came  back  to  Hastinapura. 
BhTsma  then  requested  Vicitravlrya  to  accept  her  as 
his  wife  whicji,  unfortunately,  Vicitravlrya  also  refused 
to  do-  Amba  then  turned    to  Bhlsma  and  besought  him 
to  marry  her  which,  much  to  his  regret,  he  could  not  do 
because  of  his  vow  of  celibacy.  Thus  forsaken  by  all, 
all    her   sweetness    turned   into   bitter   hatred    towards 
Bhlsma  and  she  remained    alive  thereafter  only  to  kill 
BhTsma-  But  even   the  foremost  of  warriors  were  not 
willing  to  antagonise  Bhlsma  and  so  her  appeal  to  help 
was  not  heeded  by  any.  It  was  then  that  Hotravaha  her 
grandfather  on  the  maternal  side  met  her  and  directed 
her  to  Parasurama.  When  she  went  to    Para-' urama  it 
was  Akrtavrana  who  received  her  and  on  hearing  her 
sorrowful  tale  encouraged  her  to  seek    vengeance  on 
BhTsma.  Again  it  was  he  who  persuaded  Parasurama  to 
champion  her  cause  and  go  for  a  fight  against  Bhisma. 
During  the   fight  Akrtavrana  acted  as  charioteer     to 
Parasurama.    (Sloka   9,    Chapter    179,    Udyoga  Parva, 

(5)  Akrtavrana  was  one  of  the  many  sages  who  were 
lying  on  a  bed  of  arrows  during  the    great   Kuruksetra 
battle.    (S"loka  8,  Chapter  26,  Anu:;asana  Parva,  M.B.). 


1 )  Gmtalogy.  Descended  from  Visnu  in  the  following 
order  :  Brahma-Atri-Candra-Budha-  Pururavas  -  Ayus- 
.  Nahusa-Yayati-Yadu  (Chapter  XII  of  Agni  Purana). 
Descending  from  Yadu  in  order  were  Sahasrajit-Satajit- 
KarttavTryarjuna  -  Madhu  -  Vrsni  (Chapter  XXIII  of 
Navama  Skandha,  Bhagavata).  The  Vrsni  dynasty  be- 
gins and  from  Vrsni  in  order  descended  Yudhajit-Sini- 
Satyaka-Satyaki-Jaya-Kuni-Anamitra-Prsni-£vaphalka  - 
Akrura.  (Chapter  XXIV  of  Navama  Skandha, Bhaga- 
vata ) . 


2)  Birth.     Svaphalka    of   the    Vrsni  dynasty  married 
Naudini,  daughter  of  the  King  of  Kasi  and  Akrura  was 
hum  to  them.  Akrura  was  an  uncle  <;!'SrT  Krsna   but  is 
respected  more  as  a  worshipper  of  Krsna. 

3)  Otlur  details.  (1  )He  became  famous  as  a  commander 
of  the  Yadavaormy.    (Chapter  220  of  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

(2)  Akrura  was  also  present  lor  the  Svayamvara  (wed- 
ding) of  Pancali.    (Sloka  18,  Chapter  185  of  Adi  Parva, 

(3)  At  the  time  of  Arjuna's  eloping  with  Subhadra,  a 
grand  festival  was  going  on  in  the  Raivata  mountain  and 
Akrura  was  partaking  in  the  same.    (Sloka  10,  Chapter 
218,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

(4)  Akrura  accompanied  Krsna  with  the  dowry  in- 
tended for  Subhadra.    (Sloka  29,  Chapter  220,  Adi  Parva, 

(5)  Akrura  came  to  the  country  called  Upaplavya  for 
attending  the  marriage  of  Abhimanyu.  (Sloka  22,  Chap- 
ter 72,  Virata  Parva,   M.B.). 

(6)  Akiura  and  Ahuka  always  quarrelled  with  each 
other  both  alleging  that  the  other  sided  with  the  opposite 
camp  of  Krsna.    (Slokas  9   to   11,   Chapter  81,   S~anti 
Parva,    M.B.j. 

(7)  Kariisa  planning  to  kill  Balabhadrarama  and  SrT 
Krsna  conducted  a  festival  called  Capapuja    (worship 
of  the  bow).  It  was  Akrura  whom  Kamsa  sent  to  bring 
Balabhadra  and  Krsna  for  the  festival.  Akrura  under- 
stood the  plot,  informed  Krsna  about  it  and  also  advised 
Krsna  to  kill  Kamsa.    (Da.:ama  Skandha,  Bhagavata). 

(8)  Akrura  fought  against  Jarasandha  on  the  side  of 
Krsna.    (Dasama    Skandha). 

(9)  On  another  occasion  Krsna,  Balabhadra  and  Ud- 
dhava  sent  Akrura  to  Hastinapura  to  get  tidings  about 
Kunti  and  the  Pandavas.  Akrura  met  his  sister  KuntI 
and  talked  to  her  for  a  long  time  and  also  met  Dhrta- 
rastra  and  talked  to  him  after  which  he  returned  to 
Dvaraka.    (Dasama     Skandha). 

(10)  Akrura  wentto  Hastinapura  as  a  messenger  from 
SrT  Krsna.   (Refer  sub-para  3  of  para  13  under  Krsna). 

4)  Domestic  life.     Akrura  married  Sutanu,  daughter  of 
Ahuka  and  got  two  sons  named  Devaka  and  Upadevaka. 
(Navama    Skandha ) . 

5 )  Syamantaka  and  Akrura.  Refer  para  2  under  the  word 

AKSA   I.      (Aksakumara). 

1  j  Genealogy.  Descended  in  order  from  Visnu  as 
follows:  Brahma  -  Pulastya  -  Visravas  -  Ravana  -  Aksa. 
(Uttararamayana ). 

2)  Birth.  Three  sons  were  born  to  Ravana,  King  of  the 
demons,  by  his  wife  Mandodarl.  They  were  Megha- 
nada,  Atikaya  and  Aksakumara.  Aksakumara  was  a 
redoubtable  hero  and  a  fierce  fighter  but  was  killed  by 
Haniiman  in  Lanka.  (Sarga  47,  Sundara  Kanda, 
Valmiki  Ramayana). 

AKSA  II.  We  find  another  warrior  of  this  name  among 
the  soldiers  who  came  to  help  Skanda  in  the  Kaurava- 
Pandava  battle.  (Sloka  58,  Chapter  45,  Salya  Parva, 

AKSAHRDAYA.  A  sacred  chant  or  mantra.  When 
Nala  was  roaming  about  in  the  forests  after  his  separa- 
tion from  Damayanti  he  happened  to  save  the  cobra, 
Karkotaka,  from  a  wild  fire.  But  in  return  the  snake  bit 
him  and  made  him  as  black  as  clouds.  He  then  advised 
Nala  to  go  to  the  palace  of  King  Rtuparna  where  the 


cobra  said,  Nala  would  be  taught  the  secret  mantra  of 
Aksahrdaya  by  the  King. 

One  who  knows  this  sacred  chant  can  find  out  all  secrets 
of  a  game  of  dice  and  can  count  within  no  time  the 
number  of  leaves,  fruits  and  flowers  on  a  tree.  Nala  went 
to  Rtuparna  and  stayed  with  him.  While  living  there  a 
brahmin  named  Sudeva  came  to  Rtuparna  and  informed 
him  that  Damayantl  was  going  to  marry  again.  Rtuparna 
immediately  started  for  Vidarbha  taking  Nala  as  his 
charioteer.  The  chariot  driven  by  Nala  flew  like  a  wind 
and  on  the  way  when  Rtuparna's  handkerchief  fell  down 
and  he  requested  Nala  to  stop  the  chariot.  Nala  informed 
him  that  by  the  time  the  request  was  made  they  had 
travelled  already  one  yojana.  As  they  proceeded  they 
saw  a  huge  tree  full  of  leaves  and  fruits.  Rtuparna  at  a 
glance  told  Nala  that  the  tree  contained  five  crores  of 
leaves  and  two  thousand  nine  hundred  and  five  fruits. 
Nala  was  surprised.  Then  they  understood  that  Nala 
was  able  to  drive  the  chariot  so  quickly  because  of  his 
knowledge  of  the  sacred  chant  Asvahfdaya  and  that 
Rtuparna  was  able  to  count  the  leaves  and  fruits  be- 
cause of  his  knowledge  of  the  chant  Aksahrtlaya.  They 
taught  each  other  the  sacred  mantras.  Because  of  this 
Aksahfdaya  Nala  was  able  to  win  the  game  of  dice  the 
second  time  and  regain  his  kingdom.  (Chapter  72, 
Vana  Parva). 

AKSAMALA  (ARUNDHATl).     See  under  Arundhatl. 

AKSAPRAPATANA.  A  particular  place  in  the  country 
of  Anartta.  At  this  place  Sri  Krsna  killed  two  demons 
named  Gopati  and  Talaketu.  (Sloka  29,  Chapter  38, 
Sabha  Parva,  M.B.). 

AKSARAPURUSA.  When  all  was  set  for  the  Kuru- 
ksetra  battle  Arjuna  showed  signs  of  weakness  and  hesi- 
tated to  proceed  for  a  fight.  Sri  Krsna  then  through  the 
famous  Gita  enunciated  a  philosophy  of  life  during  the 
course  of  which  he  speaks  about  the  two  purusas,  Ksara 
and  Aksara.  All  that  we  see  in  this  world  and  enjoy  are 
Ksara  and  the  power  behind  all  of  them  is  Aksara. 
God  is  one  who  transcends  the  aspects  Ksara  and  Aksara 
and  stands  as  the  root  cause  of  all  life.  (Slokas  16  to  19, 
Chapter  39_,  Bhlsma  Parva,  M.B. ) 

AKSASUTRA.  She  was  the  wife  of  the  sage  Apastamba. 
She  was  a  very  chaste  woman.  (See  under  Apastamba). 

AKSAUHINl.  A  big  division  of  an  army.  It  is  described 
in  the  Verses  19  to  26  in  the  2nd  Chapter  of  Adi  Parva  of 
the  Malayalam  Mahabharata.  It  says  thus :  One  chariot, 
one  elephant,  three  horses  and  five  soldiers  constitute 
what  is  termed  a  Patti.  Three  such  pattis  make  one  Sena- 
mukha  and  three  such  scnamukhas  make  one  Gulma. 
Three  gulmas  make  one  Gana  and  three  such  ganas 
make  one  Vahini.  Three  such  vahinis  make  one  Prtana. 
An  Aksauhml  contains  21870  chariots,  an  equal  number 
of  elephants,  65160  horses  and  109350  soldiers. 

AKSAYAPATRA.  This  is  a  copper  vessel  given  to 
Dharmaputra  by  Surya(Sun).  To  destroy  the  Pan.davas, 
Duryodhana  kept  them  in  a  palace  made  of  lac.  They 
escaped  from  there  and  passing  through  dense  forests 
crossed  the  river  Ganges  and  reached  the  Kingdom  of 
Pancala  where  they  married  the  King's  daughter, 
Krsna  (Pancall).  On  their  way  they  killed  two  demons 
called  Hidimba  and  Baka.  When  they  were  livm.g  hap- 
pily at  Indraprastha  the  jealous  Duryodhana  defeated 
them  in  a  game  of  dice  by  foul  play  and  sent  them  for  a 
period  of  twelve  years  to  the  forests.  The  Pandavas 
found  it  impossible  to  feed  the  innumerable  subjects  who 


faithfully  followed  them  to  the  forest.  Dharmaputra 
then  prayed  to  the  God,  Surya  and  he  appeared  before 
him  and  gave  him  this  Aksaya  Patra  (Ak?aya=never 
getting  empty,  Patra  =pot).  Everyday  this  pot  never 
got  empty  till  the  meals  of  Pancall  were  over.  (Chapter 
3,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.).  See  ako  under  Duryodhana; 
Para  12. 

AKSAYAVATA.  A  sacred  lake.  When  the  Pandavas 
during  their  exile  went  to  Pulastyairama  sage  Pulaslya 
gave  a  description  of  all  the  sacred  lakes  in  India.  He 
says,  "After  reaching  Markandeya  lake  you  should  visit 
the  meeting  place  of  the  rivers  Gariga  and  Gomatl. 
Then  when  you  reach  Gaya  you  will  find  there  a  lake 
called  Aksayavata.  If  you  bathe  in  that  lake  you  will 
get  salvation".  In  the  Navama  Skandha  of  Devi  Bhtga- 
vata  you  find  the  following  about  Aksayavata:  "Pu;pa- 
bhadra  is  one  of  the  famous  sacred  rivers  in  India.  This 
river  starts  from  the  Himalayas  with  the  name  Saravatl 
and  flowing  for  500  yojanas  (One  yojanam  is  equal 
to  about  8  miles)  on  the  left  side  of  river  Gomatl  reaches 
the  western  ocean.  There  is  an  airama  called  Akfaya- 
vata  on  the  shores  of  this  beautiful  river  which  always 
carries  crystal  clear  water.  The  asrama  got  that  name 
because  of  a  big  banyan  tree  standing  near  it.  Kapila, 
the  great  sage,  did  penance  sitting  here  for  a  long  time. 
Lord  Siva,  Bhadrakall  and  Skanda  used  to  come  and 
sit  underneath  this  banyan  tree. 

AKSIIiTA.  He  was  the  son  of  Viisvamitra.  (Sloka  50, 
Chapter  14,  Anusasana  Parva.  For  more  details  see 
under  Visvamitra). 


1 )  General  information.  There  is  a  lake  in  the  Hima- 
layas called  Indradyumna.  Akupara  is  a  tortoise  living 
in  it.  There  is  also  a  statement  that  this  is  the  Adi- 
Kurma    (second  of  the   ten   incarnations  of  God).  A 
description  of  Akupara  is  found  in  Chapter  199  of  Vana 
Parva  in   Mahabharata. 

2)  Cirafijivi  (One  who  has  no  death}.     When  the  Panda- 
vas were  in  exile  in  the  forests  sage  Markandeya  tells 
many  stories  to  Dharmaputra  to  console  him  in  his  sad 
plight.  The  Pandavas  asked  Markandeya  whether  he 
knew  of  anybody  living  before  him.  Then  the  sage  said, 
"In  times  of  old  Indradyumna  an  ascetic  King  (Rajarsi) 
fell  down  from  heaven  when  he  fell  short  of  his  accumu- 
lated 'Punya'.  Sorrowfully  he  came  to  me  and  asked  me 
whether  I  knew  him.  I  replied  in  the  negative  adding 
that  perhaps     Pravlrakarna  an  owl  living  on  the  top  of 
the  Himalayas  might  know  him  since   he  was   older 
than  me-  At  once  Indradyumna    became  a  horse  and 
taking  me  on  its  back  approached  the  owl  living  in  the 
Himalayas.  The  owl  also  could  not  remember  Indra- 
dyumna but  directed  him  to  a  stork  named  Nadljarhgha 
who  was  older  than  the  owl.  The  Ascetic  king  took  me 
then  to  the  Indradyumna  lake  where    the  stork  lived. 
The  stork  also  could  not  find  the  identity  of  Indra- 
dyumna. Perhaps  he  said  that  a  tortoise  of  name  Aku- 
para living  in  that  same  lake  might  know  him.  We  then 
approached  the  tortoise  and  enquired  whether  he  knew 
Indradyumna.  The  tortoise  sat  in  meditation  for  some 
time  and  then  weeping  profusely  and  shaking  like  a  leaf 
stood  bowing  respectfully  and  said,  "How  can  I  remain 
without  knowing  him  ?  There  are  several  monuments 

•  of  the  useful  work  done  by  him  here.  This  very  lake  is  of 
his  making.  This  came  into  existence  by  the  march  of 
the  cows  he  gave  away  to  the  people".  The  moment 



the  tortoise  finished  speaking  a  chariot  appeared  from 
heaven  to  take  the  King  away.  The  King  after  leaving 
me  and  the  owl  in  their  proper  places  ascended  to  heaven 
in  the  chariot.  _ 

ALAGHU.  A  son  born  to  Vasistha  by  Urjja.  Raja 
(Rajas)  Gatra,  Urdhvabahu,  Savana,  Sukra  and 
Sutapas,  who  were  great  hermits,  were  brothers  of 
Alaghu,  who  has  another  name  'Alagha'.  (Agni  Punlna, 
Chapter  20). 

ALAKA.     The  city  of  Kubera. 

ALAKANANDA.     River  Ganga  of  devaloka.  The  river 
ganga  of  the  earth  when  it    flows  through    devaloka  is 
called  Alakananda  and  is  called  VaitaranI  when  it  flows 
through     Pitrloka     (nether    world).  Kr?nadvaipayana 
(Vyasa)  declares  that  Deva  Ganga  with  crystal  pure 
water  flowing  in  devaloka  under  the  name  Alakananda 
and  Vaitarani  of  the  nether  world,  a  terror  to  sinners, 
are  the  same  as  the  Gariga  of  the  earth.  (Slokas  21  and 
22,  Chapter  170,  Bhasa  Bharata,  A.P.). 
Starting  from    Visnupada    Alakananda  flows  through 
Devayana  which  blazes  with  the  splendour  of  a  crore  of 
beautiful  many-storeyed  buildings.  Flowing  from  there 
to  Candramandala   (moon)  and  flooding  it  completely 
flows  down  to  Brahmaloka.  From  there  it  divides  into 
four  rivulets  and  flows  to  the  four  different  sides  with 
the  names  Sita,  Caksus,  Alakananda  and  Bhadra.  Of 
these  Sita  falls  on  the  thickly  wooded  mountain  tops  of 
Mahameru   and  flowing  from    there   through   Gandha- 
madana  by  the  side  of  BhadraSvavarsa  falls  down  in  the 
eastern  ocean.  Caksus  falls  on   the   top  of  Malyavan 
mountain  and  flowin-g  through  Ketumala  falls  down  in 
the   western   ocean.  The    most   sacred    of  the    group, 
Alakananda,  falls  on  the  mountain  of  Hemakuta  and 
from  there  flows  through  Bharatavarsa  and  falls  down 
in  the  southern  ocean.  The  fourth,  Bhadra,  falling  on 
the  top  of  the  Mountain,  Sriigavan   flows  to  the  northern 
ocean.  Of  these  the  most  sacred  is  Alakananda  which 
flows  through  Bharatavarsa  and  it  is  believed  that  even 
those  who  think  of  taking  a  bath  in  that  will  acquire  the 
benefit  of  performing  yagas  like  AsVamedha  and  Raja- 
suya.    (Eighth  Skandha  of  Sri  Mahadevlbhagavata).      ' 
ALAMBALA.     A  giant  who  used  to   eat  human   flesh. 
This    cannibal   was    the   son   of  Jatasura.  This    asura 
(Alambala)  fought  on  the  side  of  the  Kauravas  in  the 
Kuruksetra   battle   because  Bhimasena   had   killed  his 
father,  Jatasuia.  In  the  battle,  Ghatotkaca  cut  off  the 
head  of  this  mighty  warrior  and  magician  and  threw  his 
head  into  the  war-chariot  of  Duryodhana.  (M.B.,  Drona 
Parva,   Chapter    149). 

ALAMBATlRTHA.  A  holy  place  where  there  was  a 
sacred  bath.  Garuda,  when  he  went  to  devaloka  (the 
realm  of  the  gods)  to  bring  Arm-tarn  (ambrosia)  took 
rest  in  this  holy  place.  (See  under  the  word  Garuda. 
Also  M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  39,  Stanza  39). 
ALAMBUSA  I.  Son  of  the  giant  Rsyasrnga.  He  had 
fought  on  the  side  of  the  Kauravas.  (MB.,  Udyoga  Parva, 
Chapter  167,  Stanza  33).  There  was  a  combat  between 
Alambusa  and  Ghatotkaca,  on  the  first  day  of  the  battle 
of  Kuruksetra. 

"Alambusa  shot  ninety  sharpened  pointed  arrows  at  the 
son  of  Bhimasena  (Ghatotkaca),  cut  his  body  in  several 
places.  Though  he  was  full  of  wounds,  he  fought  all  the 
more  fiercely".  (Bhasa  Bharata,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter 
45,  Stanzas  43,  44). 


Alambusa  had  engaged  Abhimanyu,  Satyaki,  Ghatot- 
kaca, Kuntibhoja  and  Bhimasena  all  mighty  men  of 
arms,  in  single  combat,  in  the  Kaurava  battle.  It  is  seen 
that  he  has  got  another  name,  Salakajamka.  He  was 
killed  by  Ghatotkaca  in  the  battle.  (M.B.  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  109,  Stanzas  22  to  33). 

ALAMBUSA  II.  Another  king  on  the  side  of  the  Kaura- 
vas. Satyaki  killed  this  king.  (Mahabharata,  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  140,  Stanza  13). 

ALAMBUSA  III.  A  king  of  the  Raksasas.  It  is  seen  that 
this  Alambusa  was  defeated  and  driven  away  from  the 
bat'le-ficld  by  Arjuna.  (Drona  Parva,  Chapter  167, 
Stanzas  37  to  47). 

ALAMBUSA  IV.  A  giant,  the  son  of  Jatasura.  Ghatot- 
kaca killed  this  giant  in  the  battle. 

ALAMBUSA.  A  celestial  woman  born  (o  Kasyapa  by 
his  wife  Pradha. 

1)  Genealogy.     Begins    from    Visnu    in    the    following 
order:  Brahma-Ka^yapa-Alambusa. 

2)  How  she  enticed  the  hermit  Dadhica.     In  days  of  yore 
there  was  an  ascetic  named  Dadhica.  He  began  doing 
tapas  on  the  bi.nk  of  the  river    Sarasvatl.  Indra  was  in 
consternation.  Indra  sent  this  celestial  maid  Alambura 
to  entice  the  hermit.  When  the  ascetic  got  down  to  the 
river,  Alambusa  approached  him  with  enticing  actions 
and  expressions.  When  the  hermit  saw  her  he  became 
passionate  and  he   had  seminal   flow.  The  sperm  fell 
into  the  river.  The  river  became  pregnant  and  delivered 
a  child  in  due  course.  He  was  called  Sarasvata. 
Alambusa  brought  the  child  before  Dadhica,  who  blessed 
the  child  and  said  that  there  would  be  a  drought  in  the 
country  continuously  for  twelve  years  and  that  at  that 
juncture    Sarasvata    would    recite    passages    from    the 
Scripture  to  the  Brahmins  who  had  forgotten  them.  The 
much  pleased  Sarasvatl  and  Sarasvata  went  back. 

At  that  time  Indra  lost  his  Vajrayudha  (weapon  of 
thunderbolt)  somewhere.  The  Asuras  (enemies  of 
Gods)  made  an  onslaught  on  the  gods  and  their  realm. 
Indra  knew  that  with  a  weapon  made  by  the  bone  of 
Dadhica  the  Asuras  could  be  destroyed.  Indra  asked  the 
Gods  to  bring  the  bone.  They  came  down  to  the  earth 
and  requested  Dadhica  to  give  them  a  bone.  Dadhica 
giving  his  bone  died  and  attained  heaven.  With  his 
bones  Indra  made  a  good  deal  of  weapons  such  as  the 
Vajrayudha,  wheel  weapons,  maces  and  sticks  and  with 
them  Indra  slew  all  the  Daityas  (Asuras). 
After  this  there  was  a  great  famine  in  the  country.  As 
there  was  no  rain,  crops  failed  and  lands  became  dry  and 
the  Brahmins  left  the  country.  Sarasvata  alone  remained 
with  his  mother.  After  twelve  years  the  famine  and 
starvation  came  to  an  end.  By  then  the  Brahmins  had 
forgotten  the  hymns  and  mantras  of  the  Vedas.  They 
approached  the  boy  Sarasvata  and  renewed  their  me- 
mory. (Mahabharata,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  51). 
3)  Punarjanma  (Rebirth}.  Long  ago  Indra  went  to 
Brahma.  There  was  one  Vasu  called  Vidhuma  also  with 
Indra.  When  these  two  were  standing  near  Brahma, 
Alambusa  also  came  there  to  pay  homage  to  Brahma. 
The  garments  she  had  on  were  displaced  by  wind. 
Vidhuma  saw  the  dazzling  beauty  of  her  body  and  was 
overpowered  by  libido.  Alambusa  who  understood 
this,  was  filled  with  passion  for  him.  Brahma  who  saw 
the  changes  in  them  looked  at  Indra  with  displeasure. 
Indra  knowing  the  mind  of  Brahma  cursed  them:  "Both 
of  you  who  have  lost  meekness  shall  become  human  be- 




ings  and  then  your  desire  will  be  fulfilled".  Owing  to 
the  curse  Vidhuma  was  born  as  Sahasranlka,  the  illus- 
trious King  of  Candra  varriia  (Lunar  dynasty)  and 
Alambusa  took  birth  as  Mrgavati,  the  daughter  ol  King 
Krtavarma  and  his  wife  Kaiavatl.  (Kathasaritsagara, 
Kathamukhalambaka,  Taraiiga  1 ) . 

4 )  The  curse  of  Tilottama.     Sahasranlka  the  incarnation 
of  Vidhuma  and  Mrgavati  the  incarnation  of  Alambusa 
fell  in  love  with  each  other  on  the  earth  also.  Before 
the  wedding  took  place  Devendra  once  invited  Sahasra- 
nlka to  heaven.  He  lived  there  for  a  time  as  the  guest 
of  the  Gods.  After  having  defeated  the  Asuras  it  was 
time  for  him  to  return.     Indra  sent  Tilottama  to  keep 
company.  The    charioteer    was    driving.    Sahasranlka 
immersed  in  the  thought  of  Mrgavati  was  sitting  silent. 
Tilottama  said  something  which  the  King  did  not  hear. 
Tilottama  cursed  him  that  he  would  be  separated  for 
fourteen  years   from   the   object  about  which  he  was 
thinking.  He  was  not  even  aware  of  the  curse. 

5)  The  period   of  separation.     The    King   returned    to 
Kausambi   his  capital   cit>.  Without  much   delay   the 
wedding   ceremony   also   was   conducted.  She   became 
pregnant.  One  day  she  told  her  lover-husband  that  she 
had  a  desire  to  dip  in  a  blood  pond.  The  King  made  a 
pond  and  filled  it  with  a  solution  of  Laksa  (wax,  when 
dissolved  in  water,  the  water  will  look  like  blood)  and 
such  other  substances.  Mrgavati  was  dipping  and  splash- 
ing in  it  when  an  eagle   taking  her  to  be  a  piece  of  flesh 
took  her  away.  At  the  loss  of  his  wife  Sahasranlka  lost 
his    senses    and    fell    down    unconscious.  Immediately 
Ma  tali,  Indra's  charioteer,  came  down  from  the  realm  of 
Gods  and  brought  the  King  back  to  consciousness,  and 
then  informing  him  of  the  curse  of  Tilottama  he  returned. 
Without  paying  any  heed  to  the  consolatory  words  of 
his  ministers  or  other  inmates  of  the  palace  the  King 
went  on  lamenting  and  moaning,  "ha,  my  love  Mrga- 
vati !  Where  are  you  now  ?"  and  waited  for  the  end  of 
the  period  of  the  curse,  execrating    Tilottama.  Casting 
Mrgavati  on  the  Mountain  of  the  Rising  Sun  the  great 
bird  flew  away.  The  horror-stricken  queen,  thinking  of 
hei  present  condition  cried  aloud.  A  very  large  mountain 
snake  began  to  draw  near  to  swallow  her.  A  divine 
person  saved  her  from  that  situation  and  vanished.  The 
unprotected   Mrgavati   decided   to   commit   suicide.  It 
was  a  forest  which  abounded  in  lions,  tigers,  bears  and 
such  other  ferocious  animals.  But  none  of  them  came 
near  her ;  over  and  above  the  exertion  of  carrying,  she 
had  to  bear  the  difficulties  of  her  forlorn  condition,  and 
she  grew  weary  and  worn  and  became  unconscious. 
Then  a  hermit  boy  came  there  and  questioned  her  who 
was  now  lean  and  ill-dressed,  about  her  condition  and 
consoling  her  guided  her  to  the  hermitage  of  the  great 
hermit  Jamadagni.  When  she  saw  the  hermit  who  was 
as  radiant  as  the  Sun,  she  bowed  low  before  him.  "My 
daughter  !  Don't  fear.  You  will  get  a  heroic  son  here  who 
will  continue  your  family.  You  will  be  reunited  to  your 
husband."  Said  the  great  and  noble  hermit,  who  could 
foresee  the  future.  Somewhat  pacified  Mrgavati  lived 
in  that  hermitage  waiting  for  reunion  with  her  husband. 
After  some  days  she  gave   birth  to  a  son  who  had  all  the 
symptoms  of  greatness.     At  the  birth  of  the  child  Mrga- 
vati heard  an  unknown  voice  saying,  "This  boy  would 
become  the  great  and  renowned  King  Udayana.  His  son 
would  get  the  leadership  of  the  Vidyadharas(the  musi- 
cians of  the  Gods)".  At  this  the  queen  was  immensely 

pleased.  The  boy  Udayana  grew  up  in  the  hermitage, 
an  incarnation  of  all  good  qualities.  The  heimit  to  whom 
the  past,  the  present  and  the  future  were  not  obscure, 
periormed  the  necessary  rites  and  rituals  becoming  a 
Ksatriya  boy  (Ruling  caste)  and  taught  him  everything 
including  the  Dhanurveda  (the  Science  of  Archery). 
As  a  token  of  her  intense  love  for  the  son,  she  put  a  bangle 
with  the  name  of  Sahasranlka  inscribed  on  the  arm  of 
Udayana.  One  day  when  Udayana  was  tramping  the 
forest,  he  saw  a  snake-charmer  catching  a  snake.  Seeing 
the  beauty  of  the  snake  he  asked  the  snake-charmer  to  let 
the  snake  free.  But  the  snake-charmer  replied,  "  Oh 
Prince,  this  is  my  daily  bread.  I  earn  my  livelihood  by 
exhibiting  snakes.  My  previous  snake  was  dead  and  it 
was  with  the  help  of  a  good  deal  of  herbs  and  spells  and 
incantations  that  I  caught  this  one". 
When  he  heard  this  Udayana  felt  pity  for  him  and  gave 
the  bangle  to  the  snake-charmer  and  let  the  snake  free. 
When  the  snake-charmer  had  gone  with  the  bangle, 
the  snake  beaming  with  joy  said  to  Udayana:  "I  am 
Vasunemi,  the  elder  brother  of  Vasuki.  I  am  grateful  to 
you  for  giving  me  freedom.  I  give  you  this  lute  producing 
exquisite  notes  of  music,  betels  and  some  tricks  to  pre- 
pare never  fading  garlands  and  paste  to  make  marks  on 
the  forehead.  Receive  them  as  my  presents".  Udayana 
accepted  the  presents  with  gladness  and  returned  more 
luminous  than  before  to  the  hermitage  of  Jamadegni. 
The  snake-charmer  took  the  bangle,  given  by  Udayana 
to  the  bazar  for  sale.  The  police  caught  him  and  took 
him  before  the  King,  because  they  saw  the  name  of  the 
King  inscribed  on  the  bangle.  The  King  asked  him  how 
he  got  the  bangle  and  the  snake-charmer  told  the  King 
the  story  from  the  catching  of  the  snake  till  he  got  the 
bangle-  "This  is  the  bangle  that  I  put  on  the  arm  of  my 
wife.  The  boy  who  gave  this  bangle  to  this  snake-charmer 
must  be  my  son."  The  King  was  thinking  with  sadness, 
when  the  King  heard  a  voice  from  above  say,  "O  King  ! 
the  period  of  the  curse  is  over.  Your  wife  and  son  are 
in  the  Mountain  of  the  Rising  Sun".  At  these  words  the 
King  felt  extreme  joy.  Somehow  or  other  he  spent  the 
rest  of  the  day.  Early  the  next  morning  the  King  follow- 
ed by  his  army,  went  to  the  Mountain  of  the  Rising  Sun 
to  bring  back  his  wife  and  son.  They  took  the  snake- 
charmer  to  show  them  the  way. 

In  due  course  the  King  and  his  train  reached  the  holy 
hermitage  of  the  eminent  hermit  Jamadagni.  The  place 
was  always  vibrant  with  sounds  of  the  repeating  and  reci- 
tation of  the  Holy  scriptures  and  covered  with  smoke 
mingled  with  the  fragrance  of  burning  herbs  and  other 
oblations  burned  in  the  sacrificial  fire.  The  various  wild 
animals  which  are  born  enemies  of  each  other  got  on 
amicably  there.  The  hermit  who  was  an  incarnation  of 
the  higher  aspirations  greeted  the  King  who  was  the 
protector  of  the  ascetics,  with  the  hospitality  becoming 
his  status.  The  King  who  saw  Mrgavati  with  their  son 
was  overcome  with  gladness.  Their  reunion  caused  a 
shower  of  Ambrosia  (Amrta).  The  King  stood  before 
the  hermit  with  folded  arms  and  bowed  head  for  per- 
mission to  depart.  To  the  King  the  hermit  Jamadagni 
said  :  "Oh,  King,  you  are  welcome  to  this  hermitage. 
To  those  such  as  you  who  are  of  the  'Rajogunapradhana' 
caste  (Ruling  race)  the  peaceful  atmosphere  of  our 
hermitage  may  not  be  appealing  to  the  heart.  But  a  holy 
hermitage  is  more  respectable  than  the  palace  of  an 
Emperor.  There  is  no  place  for  unhappiness  here.  You 


might  have  known  that  the  reason  for  your  separation 
is  a  curse.  When  you  were  returning  from  heaven  with 
Tilottama,  you  were  so  much  engrossed  in  the  thought  of 
Mrgavati  that  you  did  not  pay  any  heed  to  the  conver- 
sation of  Tilottama.  She  was  displeased  with  your  be- 
haviour and  cursed  you.  In  future,  if  ever  you  happen  to 
get  into  a  position  which  will  cause  you  mental  trouble 
you  can  be  assured  of  the  presence  of  this  Jamadagni." 
The  King  said,  "I  am  extremely  grateful  to  your  Emi- 
nence for  this  great  boon.  I  am  fully  aware  of  the  fact 
that  the  presence  of  the  holy  hermits  who  have  under 
their  control  the  eightfold  prosperities,  is  always  a 
harbinger  of  peace  and  prosperity.  I  am  very  sorry  to 
say  that  the  exigency  of  my  presence  at  the  capital  due  to 
the  pressure  of  work  in  connection  with  the  luling  of  the 
country  compels  me  to  cut  short  my  visit  to  this  holy 
hermitage.  I  shall  be  looking  forwaid  with  pleasure  to 
occasions  which  will  enable  me  to  pay  visits  to  this  Holy 

Much  pleased  at  the  speech  of  the  King  the  hermit  said 
to  Mrgavati:  "My  daughter  !  Not  only  myself,  but  all 
the  inmates  of  this  hermitage  are  highly  pleased  at 
having  got  you  in  our  midst  for  so  long.  We  are  sorry  to 
part  from  you.  Now  look  !  the  animals  of  the  hermitage 
are  standing  round  you  and  shedding  tears.  Still  we  are 
consoled  at  your  reunion  with  your  husband.  Naturally 
you  are  of  a  very  good  character  and  your  life  in  this 
hermitage  has  given  you  a  nice  training  and  so  there  is  no 
need  for  any  more  advice  from  me  at  this  time." 
Saying  this  he  drew  Udayana  to  his  side,  kissed  him  on 
his  head  and  said  to  the  King  again :  "This  son  is  a  deco- 
ration to  your  dynasty.  This  handsome  boy  has  been_ 
taught  everything  becoming  a  royal  prince.  Let  him  be  a 
costly  gem  to  you". 

Thus  blessing  the  boy  the  hermit  led  him  to  the  King. 
The  joy  at  her  reunion  with  husband,  her  shyness  at 
being  near  him,  her  sorrow  at  having  to  depart  from  the 
hermitage  and  the  surging  feeling  in  her  mind — all 
these  made  her  dumb  and  so  being  unable  to  say  any- 
thing she  expressed  her  love  and  regard  for  the  hermit 
whom  she  loved  as  her  father,  by  some  motions  of  her 
body  and  took  leave  of  him  with  her  son.  The  blessed 
King  and  his  tram,  looking  at  the  men,  beasts  and  birds 
which  accompanied  them  for  a  while,  took  leave  of  them 
and  proceeded  to  the  capital  city.  On  reaching  there 
the  King  anointed  his  son  Udayana  as  King.  Sahasra- 
nika  then  went  to  the  Himalayas  to  practise  ascesis  with 
his  wife.  (Kathasaritsagara,  Kathamukhalambaka, 
Tarariga  2). 

(b)     Enticing  Trnabindu.     A  story  is  se^n  in  the  Bhaga- 
vata  of  how  Alambusa  enticed  the  King  Trnabindu.  He 
married   Alambusa   and    a   daughter    named    Idavida 
(IlabiJ'i)  was  born  to  them.  This  Ilabila  was  married 
to  Visravas,  to  whom  a  son  named  Kubera  (the  Lord  of 
wealth)  was  born    By  Alambusa  Trnabindu  had  three 
sons  called  Visala,   Sunyabandhu  and  Dhiimraketu. 
"Tarn  bhejelambusa  devi 
Varapsarayaste,    putrah 
Kanya  cedabidabhavat 
Vi-'.rava  dhanadarh  sutarh 
Pradaya   vidyam  parama- 


Mrsiryogebvarat    pituh 
Visalah  sunyabandhu:,ca 
Visalo  vaimakrdraja 
VaiSallrh  nirmame  purim". 

"He  who  is  the  seat  of  all  laudable  qualities  (Trnabindu) 
was  honoured  by  Alambusa  (as  husband).  Idavida 
their  daughter  was  given  in  marriage  to  Visravas  and 
to  them  was  born  Dhanada  (Kubera).  His  father 
who  was  a  great  hermit  taught  him  everything  required. 
Three  sons  ViSala,  Sunyabandhu  and  Dhumraketu, 
were  born  to  them.  Visala  who  was  the  founder  of  the 
Dynasty,  built  a  city  called  Vais'li."  (Bhagavatam, 
Navama  Skandham,  Chapter  2,  Stanzas  31-33). 
Alambusa  took  part  in  the  birthday  celebration  of 

(Mahabharata,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65,  Stanza  49)  (See 
ALA&KARAGRANTHA.      (A  book    on    rhetorics    and 

figures  of  speech).  See  the  word  Pattu. 
ALA&KARAVATl.  Wife  of  King  Naravahanadatta.  It 
is  seen  in  the  Kathasaritsagara  where  a  Vidyadhara 
woman  tells  the  story  of  Alarikaravati  to  the  King. 
Once  a  vidyadhara  named  AlarikarasTla  ruled  over  a 
city  called  Sri  Sundarapura  in  the  Himalayas.  His  wife 
was  called  Kancanaprabha.  A  son  was  born  to  them. 
They  named  him  Dharmaula  because  Devi  KatyayanI 
told  them  in  a  dream  that  the  son  would  become  Dharma- 
para  (who  performs  duties  well).  To  the  prince,  know- 
ledge in  every  branch  of  studies  was  imparted  and  then 
he  was  anointed  heir  to  the  throne.  He  executed  regal 
functions  to  perfection  and  ruled  his  subjects  better  than 
his  father.  Kancanaprabha,  wife  of  Alarikarasila,  gave 
birth  to  a  daughter.  At  the  time  of  her  birth  a  heavenly 
voice  said  that  she  would  become  the  wife  of  Narava- 
hanadatta the  emperor  of  the  Vidyadharas.  They  named 
her  Alarikaravati.  She  grew  into  a  very  beautiful  maiden. 
She  learned  arts  and  sciences  from  her  father.  She  went 
on  a  pilgrimage  to  the  Siva  temples  far  and  wide.  One 
day  she  heard  a  celestial  voice:  "Go  to  the  Svayambhu 
•  temple  in  Kasmira  and  worship  there  and  you  will  get 
as  your  husband  Naravahanadatta."  Finally  Nara- 
vahanadatta the  emperor  of  Vidyadharas  married  her. 
(Kathasaritsagara,  Lambaka  9,  Taranga  1). 
ALOLUPA.  A  son  of  Dhrtarastra. 

ALPAKALA  (M).  A  short  time.  (Alpa  =  short  and  Kala 
=  time).  In  the  Bhagavata  the  following  definition  is 
given  of  alpakala  :  "Take  two  tender  leaves  of  a  lotus 
and  place  one  on  the  other.  Let  a  strong  man  take  a 
sharp  needle  and  thrust  it  hard  at  the  leaves.  The  time 
taken  for  the  needle  to  pierce  one  leaf  and  reach  the 
other  is  alpakala".  [Bhagavata  (Malayalam  version), 
Skandha  3]. 

ALARKA(M)  I.  The  name  of  an  insect.  It  was  in  the 
form  of  this  insect  that  Indra  went  and  bore  a  hole  on 
the  leg  of  Karna  while  Para.'turama  was  sleeping  on  his 
lap.  The  blood  that  flowed  from  Kama's  foot  wetted  the 
body  of  the  preceptor. 

ALARKA  II.  A  king  of  the  states  of  Ka$I  and  Karusa. 
He  was  a  very  honest  man.  Forsaking  all  riches  and  his 
kingdom  he  accepted  Dharmamarga.  (Sloka  64,  Chap- 
ter 115,  Anusasana  Parva,  M.B.).  He  was  a  member  of 

*Alambusa  was  the  mother  of  the  Celestial  maid  Kalavati.  See  the  word  Thintha  Karate. 




the  council  of  yama.  He  attained  salvation  by  yoga  and 
meditation.  (18th  Sloka,  Chapter  8,  Sabha  Parva,  M.B.). 
Once  Alarka  decided  to  overcome  the  five  senses.  To 
control  them  he  sent  arrows  at  the  mind,  nose,  tongue, 
ear,  eye,  skin  and  intelligence.  But  the  senses  never 
surrendered  to  them.  Then  Alarka  by  sheer  dhyana 
and  yoga  brought  them  under  control.  (M.B.,  Anu- 
sasana  Parva,  Chapter  30). 

Alarka  once  told  a  blind  brahmin  boy  to  ask  for  any  boon 
from  him.  The  boy  demanded  the  eyes  of  Alarka.  To 
keep  his  promise  Alarka  scooped  out  his  eyes  and  gave 
them  to  the  blind  boy.  (Ramayana,  Ayodhya  Kanda, 
Sarga,  12,  Sloka  43). 

ALATAKSl.  A  woman  in  the  service  of  Skanda.  (M.B., 
Salya  Parva,  Chapter  43,  Stanza  8). 

ALAYUDHA.  A  giant.  He  was  the  brother  of  Bakasura. 
He  fought  on  the  side  of  the  Kauravas.  (M.B.,  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  95,  Stanza 46  and  Chapter  1 76,  Stanza  6). 
Alayudha  combated  with  Bhimasena  and  Ghatotkaca 
and  was  killed  by  Ghatotkaca. 

AMADHYA.  A  synonym  of  Sri  Krsna.  (M.B.,  Santi 
Parva,  Chapter  342,  Verse  90). 

AMAHATHA.  A  serpent.  It  was  burnt  up  in  the  fire  at 
the  Sarpa  satra  of  Janamejaya.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  57,  Verse  16). 

AMANTHU.     A  king  of  the  family  of  Priyavrata. 

Genealogy.  From  Visnu  descended  in  this  order  : 
Brahma-Svayambhuva  Manu  -  Priyavrata  -  Aglndhra- 
Nabhi-Rsabha  -  Bharata  -  Sumati  -  Devatljit  -  Deva- 
dyumna  -  Paramesti  -  Pratiha  -  Pratiharta  -  Bhuma  - 
Sita  -  Prastoka  -  Vibhu  -  Prthusena  -  Nakta  -  Gaya  - 
Citraratha  -  Samrat  -  Marici  -  Vinduman  -  Madhu  - 
Vlravrata  -  Amanthu.  Vlravrata  had  two  sons,  Manthu 
and  Amanthu. 

AMARACANDRA.  A  Sanskrit  poet.  It  is  believed  that 
he  lived  in  the  13th  Cent.  A.D.  Bala  Bharata  was  his 
work.  Amaracandra  was  a  Jaina  priest.  It  is  said  that 
he  was  a  courtier  of  Visaladeva,  the  son  of  King  Vira- 
dhavala  who  ruled  over  Gujarat  from  1243  to  1262. 

AMARAGUPTA.  He  was  the  minister  of  King  Vikrama- 
sirhha  who  ruled  over  Avanti  in  olden  times.  (Katha- 
saritsagara,  Madana  Man  cuka  lambaka,  First  Taraiiga ) . 

AMARAHRADA.  A  place  of  holy  bath.  One  who  takes 
his  bath  here  will  attain  Svarga.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva, 
Chapter  83,  Verse  106). 

AMARAKAIVTAKA.  A  mountain.  It  was  on  this 
mountain  that  some  parts  of  Tripura,  which  was  burnt 
by  Siva  fell-  From  that  time  it  became  a  holy  place.  In 
Padma  Purana,  Adi  Khanda,  Chapter  15,  we  see  the 
following  passage  about  the  benefits  obtained  by  visit- 
ing this  holy  place.  "One  who  goes  to  Amarakantaka 
mountain  will  enjoy  the  fourteen  worlds  for  thirtyseven 
thousand  crores  of  years.  Afterwards  he  will  be  born  on 
earth  as  King  and  reign  as  supreme  emperor.  A  visit  to 
Amarakantaka  has  ten  times  the  value  of  an  A^vamedha. 
If  one  has  Siva's  darsana  there,  one  will  attain  Svarga. 
At  the  time  of  eclipse,  all  kinds  of  holy  things  converge 
towards  Amarakantaka.  Those  who  take  their  bath  in 
Jvalesvara  in  Amarakantaka  will  enter  Svarga.  The 
dead  will  have  no  rebirth.  Those  who  renounce  their 
lives  at  Jvalesvara  will  live  in  Rudraloka  till  the  time  of 
great  Deluge.  In  the  valley  of  Amarakantaka  and  in  the 
Tirtha  live  D^vas  known  as  Amiras  and  numerous  Rsis. 
Amarakantaka  Ksetra  has  a  circumference  of  one  yojana. 
(about  eight  miles). 

AMARAPARVATA.  An  ancient  place  in  Bharata. 
Nakula  had  conquered  this  place.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva, 
Chapter  32,  Verse  11). 

AMARAVATl.  It  is  the  city  of  Indra,  the  King  of  the 
Devas.  Its  location  is  described  in  Devi  Bhagavata  as 
follows:  "Brahma's  world  extends  over  10,000  yojanas 
on  the  Mahameru  mountain.  There  are  eight  cities — 
each  2,500  square  yojanas  in  extent — of  the  Astadik- 
palakas  in  eight  parts  of  this  Brahmapuii.  Thus  there  are 
nine  cities  on  the  top  of  the  Maha  Meru.  They  are  the 
following: — 

1.  In  the  centre  is  Brahma's  city,  Manovatl. 

2.  To  the  east  of  Manovatl,  Indra's  city,  Amaravatl. 

3.  In  the  south-east  corner,  Agni's  city,  Tejovati. 

4.  On  the  southern  side,  Yama's  city,  Samyamani. 

5.  In  the  south-west  corner,  Nirrti's  city,  Krsnanjana. 

6.  In  the  west,  Varuna's  city,  Sraddhavatl. 

7.  In  the  north-west  corner,  Vayu's  city,  Gandhavati. 

8.  In  the  north,  Kubera's  city  Mahodaya. 

9.  In  the  north-east  corner,  Siva's  city,  Ya:'ovati. 
(Devi  Bhagavata,  Astama  Skandha). 

AMARDANA.     See    the    word    "PAJSfCATANTRA". 

AMAVASl.  In  Amarako.'^a  we  read  about  AmavasI: 
"Amavasya  tvamavasya  daiSah  suryendusamgamah". 
AmavasI  means  New  Moon.  "Ama"  means  "Saha". 
So  AmavasI  is  the  Union  of  Sun  and  Moon  in  the  same 

Once  Bhrgu  Maharsi  cursed  Agni.  At  that  time  Agni 
explained  the  importance  of  AmavasI.  The  oblations 
which  ate  offered  as  homa  into  the  fire  become  the  food 
of  the  Devas  and  Pitrs.  Substances  offered  as  homa  on 
PurnamasI  become  food  of  the  Devas  and  those  offered 
on  AmavasI  become  food  of  the  Pitrs.  (M.B.,  Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  7). 

AMAVASU   I.     Son  of  Pururavas    by     UrvasT.    (M.B., 
Adi  Parva,  Chapter  75,  Verse  24). 
Genealogy.     From    Visnu,    Biahma-Atri-Candra-Budha- 
Pururavas-Amavasu . 

AMAVASU  II.  One  of  the  Pitrs.  Once  Acchoda  was 
fascinated  by  the  physical  charm  of  this  Amavasu  and 
made  advances  of  love  to  him.  Amavasu  repelled  her 
advances.  On  account  of  this  impropriety  of  Acchoda, 
who  was  a  spiritual  daughter  of  the  Pitrs,  she  was  de- 
graded and  in  her  next  birth  was  born  as  Kali  or 
Satyavati.  (Padma  Puiana,  Srsti  Kh;nda). 

AMBA.     Daughter   of  a  Kng  of 

1 )  Ambd  and  Vicitravir}  a.  Amba  is  an  ill-starred 
character  in  the  story  ol  the  Maha.bhf.rata.  She  had 
two  younger  sisters  named  Ambika  and  Ambalika. 
Bhisma,who  had  taken  a  vow  to  remain  a  bachelor  for 
life,  had  once  taken  Amb  .,  Ambika  and  Ambalika,  the 
three  daughters  of  the  King  of  Kail,  to  Hastinapura. 
The  circumstances  in  which  this  happened,  are  descri- 
ed in  Devi  Bhagavata,  Prathama  Skandha  as  follows  : 
Santanu,  a  King  of  the  Candra  Varh;:a,  had  two  wives, 
Gaiiga  and  Satyavati.  Bhlsma  was  the  son  of  Gaiiga 
and  Citraiigada  and  Vicitravirya  were  the  sons  of 
Satyavati.  Soon  after  Bhisma's  birth,  Gaiiga  vanished. 
After  a  long  period  of  reign,  Santanu  also  died.  Satya- 
vati and  the  three  sons  were  left  behind  in  the  palace. 
According  to  a  vow  he  had  taken  long  ago,  Bhlsma, 
instead  of  succeeding  to  his  father's  throne,  left  it  to  his 
brother  Citraiigada.  Once  Citraiigada  went  for  hunting 
in  the  forest.  There  he  came  across  a  Gandharva  named 
Citrangada.  The  Gandharva  did  not  like  another  man 




with  his  own  name  to  be  living  in  this  woild.  So  he 
killed  the  king.  Alter  that  Vicitravlrya  became  king. 
Bhlsma  had  to  take  up  the  task  of  arranging  a  suitable 
marriage  for  Vicitravlrya. 

2)  The  Svayamvara.     It  was  at  this  time  that  Bhlsma 
came  to  know  that  the  King  of  Kasi  was  arranging  the 
Svayarhvara  of  his  three  daughters,  Amba,  Ambika  and 
Ambalika.  Bhlsma  went  there  and  in  the  presence  of  all 
the   kings  who   had   assembled   there,    took   the   three 
princesses  with  him  to  Hastinapura.  There  he  made  all 
preparations  for  the  marriage.  But  as  the  time  for  the 
ceremony  approached,  the  eldest  and  most  beautiful  of 
the  princesses,  Amba  went  to  Bhlsma  and  said  :  "I  had 
already  made  up  my  mind  long  ago  to  marry  Salva,  the 
King.  Besides,  we  are  deeply  in  love  with  each  other. 
Therefore,  please  consider  whether  it  is  proper  on  the 
part  of  a  great  man  like  you  to  force  me  into  another 

On  hearing  this,  Bhlsma  allowed  her  to  do  as  she  liked. 
Amba  then  went  to  King  Salva  and  made  an  appeal  to 
him  to  accept  her  as  his  wife  since  they  were  mutually 
in  love. 

3)  Salva  s   rejection.     To     her     words   Salva   replied: 
"What  you  have  said  about  our  mutual  love  is  true.  But 
it  is  not  right  for  a  man  to  accept  a  woman  who  has  been 
accepted  by  another.  I  saw  Bhlsma  taking  you  by  hand 
and  helping  you  into  his  chariot.     Therefore  go  at  once 
to  Bhlsma  himself  and  ask  him  to  accept  you."  Stunned 
by  his  words,  she  turned  away,  to  go  to  the  forest  to  do 

4)  Revenge  on  Bhisma.     In  the  Mahabharata,    Udyoga 
Parva,  Chapter  1 7,  we  find  that  Amba  had  cherished  a 
secret  desire  to  wreak  vengeance  on  Bhlsma.  She  went  to 
the  Asrama  of  Saikhavatya  Muni  in  the  forest  and  stayed 
there  for  the  night.  Her  wish  to  do  penance  was  approv- 
ed by  the  Muni.     On    the  next  day,  Amba's  maternal 
grandfather,  Hotravahana     (Srnjaya)   came  that  way. 
Hotravahana  came  to  know  of  all  her  misfortunes.  He 
advised  her  to  inform  Parasurama  of  all  her  grievances. 
Just  at  that  moment  Akrtavrana,  a  follower  of  Para'm- 
rama  happened  to  come  there.  Hotravahana  introduced 
Amba   to  Akrtavrana.    Both   Akrtavrana   and   Srnjaya 
explained   all   her   affairs   to   Parasurama.  Parasurama 
undertook  to  persuade  Bhlsma  to  accept  Amba  (as  his 
wife).  But  Para  drama's  proposal  was  turned  down  by 
Bhlsma.  A  terrible  duel   took  place  between  them  at 
Kuruksetra.  When  the  fight  reached   a  critical  stage, 
Narada  and  the  gods  induced  Parasurama  to  withdraw 
from  the  duel.  Thus  the  fight  ended  with  equal  victory 
to  both.  Finding  that  it  was  not  possible  to  achieve  her 
object    through    Para-iurama's    mediation,    Amba    re- 
nounced food,  sleep  etc.  and  went  to  the  Yamuna  valley 
to  do  penance  for  six    years.     (M.B.,   Udyoga  Parva, 
Chapter  188).     After  that    for  one  year  she  went  on  a 
fast,  lying  under  the  water  in  the  river  Yamuna.  Again 
for  another  year  she  did  penance,  standing  on  the  tip  of 
the  toes  and  eating  only  dry  leaves.  Next,  she  reduced 
the  sky  and  earth   to   flames  by  doing  penance.  The 
goddess  Gariga    appeared  to  her  and  when  she    under- 
stood her  plight,  she  told  Amba  that  it  was  not  possible 
to  kill  Bhlsma.  In  her  agony  and  despair,  without  even 
drinking  water,  she  wandered  about  here  and     there. 
The  goddess  Gariga  cursed  her  to  become  a  river  in  the 
Vatsa  country.  As  a  result  of  the  curse,  a  part  of  her  was 
turned   into   the   river  known  as  Amba. 

5 )  Siva's  Boon.     The   remaining  part  of  her  engaged 
itself  in  penance.  Siva  appeared  to  her  and  told  her  that 
in  the  next  birth  she  would  attain  masculinity.  He  added 
that  she  would  be  born  in  the  Drupada  dynasty  as  a 
great  archer  under  the  name  of  Citrayodhi  and  kill 
Bhlsma.  Pleased  with  this  prophecy,  she  took  a  vow  that 
she  would  kill  Bhlsma  and  making  a  pyre,  burnt  herself 
to  death. 

6)  Rebirth.     King  Drupada's  queen  had  been  in  great 
distress  for  a  long  time  because  she  had  no  children. 
Drupada  propitiated  Siva  by  worshipping  him  for  an 
issue.  Siva  blessed  him  and  said  that  a  girl  would  be 
born  to  him,  but  she  would  be  transformed  into  a  boy. 
In  due  course,  the  queen  gave  birth  to  a  girl,  but  it  was 
announced  that  it  was  a  boy.  Therefore  the  child  had  to 
be  brought  up,  dressed  like  a  boy.  The  child  became 
famous  under  the  name  of  Sikhandi.  When  Sikhandl 
attained  youth,  Drupada  decided  to  look  for  a  wife  for 
him  (her  ?).  Still  he  was  greatly  perplexed  as  to  how  to 
find  a  wife  for  Sikhandi  who  was  already  a  youthful 
virgin  !  But  his  wife  assured  Drupada   that  Sikhandi 
would  become  a  man,  according  to  Siva's  blessing.  So, 
Drupada  made  a  proposal  for  Sikhandi's  marriage  with 
the  daughter  of  the  King  of  Da:;arna. 

7)  Sikhandi's   Marriage.     Hiranyavarna,  the    King    of 
Da^arna,  gave  his  daughter  in  marriage  to  Sikhandi. 
The  couple  arrived  at  Kambalyapura.  By  this  time  the 
wife  came  to  know  that  the  "husband"  was  a  woman. 
She  disclosed  the  secret  to  her  Ladies-in-waiting.  They 
in  turn  communicated  it  to  the  king.  Enraged  at  this, 
Hiranyavarna  sent  a  messenger  to  King  Drupada  to 
ascertain  the  truth  of  the  matter.  He  even  began  to 
make  preparations  for   waging  a  war  against  Drupada, 
King  of  Pancala.  Drupada  and  his  queen  were  in  a  fix. 
At  this  stage  the  distressed  Sikhandi  proceeded  to  the 
forest,    determined    to    commit    suicide.  People    were 
afraid  of  entering  that  forest  because  a  Yaksa  named 
Sthunakarna  lived  there.  Sikhandl  went  to  the  premises 
of  the  Yaksa  and  performed  certain  rites  for  a  number  of 
days.  The  Yaksa  appeared  to  her.  Sikhandi  explained 
the  whole  matter  to  him.  They  entered  into  a  contract. 
According  to  it,   they  exchanged  their  sexes — Sikhandi 
receiving  the  male  sex  of  die  Yaksa  and  the  Yaksa  receiv- 
ing the  female  sex  of  Sikhandi.  Sikhandi  returned  home 
as  a  man.  Drupada  repeated  with  greater  force  his  old 
plea  that  his  child  was  a  man.  Hiranyavarna  made  a 
thorough  examination  of  Sikhandi  and  convinced  him- 
self of  the  truth.  Many  years  after,  Hiranyavarna  died. 

8)  Kubera's  Arrival.     At  that  time,  in  the  course  of  his 
world  tour  Kubera  arrived  at  the  residence  of  Sthuna- 
karna. The  Yaksa  who  was  in  female  form,  did  not 
come   out   to   receive   Kubera.  In   his   anger,   Kubera 
pronounced  a  curse  that  the  female  sex  of  Sthunakarna 
and  the  male  sex  of  Sikhandl  would  continue  for  ever. 
The  Yaksa  prayed  for  the  lifting  of  the  curse.  Kubera 
released  him  from  the  curse  by  saying  that  after  the 
death  of  Sikhandi,  the  Yaksa  would  be  restored  to  his 
own   male     sex. 

According  to  the  previous  agreement,  Sikhandi  went  to 
Sthunakarna's  place  after  the  death  of  Hiranyavarna. 
But  coming  to  know  of  all  that  had  happened,  he  return- 
ed home.  Thus  Sikhandi  became  a  man  permanently. 
Sikhandi  had  received  his  training  in  arms  under  Drona- 
carya.  In  the  great  Kaurava-Pandava  battle,  he  became 
a  charioteer. 


9)  Sikhandl's  Revenge.  The  Mahabharata,  Bhisma 
Parva,  Chapter  108,  describes  Bhisma's  encounter  with 
Sikhandi  during  the  Kaurava-Pandava  battle.  The 
Pandavas  started  the  day's  battle  by  keeping  Sikhandi 
in  the  vanguard.  Bhima,  Arjuna,  Abhimanyu  and  other 
warriors  were  giving  him  support.  It  was  Bhisma  who 
led  the  Kaurava  forces.  Arrows  began  to  fly  from  both 
sides.  It  was  the  tenth  day  of  the  battle  and  Sikhandi 
shot  three  arrows  aimed  at  Bhisma's  breast.  Bhisma 
with  a  smile  of  contempt  said  to  Sikhandi,  "Sikhandi  ! 
Brahma  created  you  as  a  woman.  You  may  do  as  you 
like".  Hearing  this  taunt,  Sikhandi  became  more  in- 
furiated. Arjuna  inspired  him  with  greater  courage. 
After  that,  keeping  Sikhandi  in  front,  Arjuna  began  to 
fight  with  Bhisma.  Sikhandi  also  showered  his  arrows 
on  him.  Ten  of  these  arrows  of  Sikhandi  hit  Bhisma's 
breast.  Bhisma  disregarded  even  those  arrows.  At  last 
he  said:  "I  cannot  kill  the  Pandavas  because  they  are 
invulnerable  (avadhyah).  I  cannot  kill  Sikhandi  be- 
cause he  is  really  a  woman  and  not  man.  Though  I  am 
also  invulnerable  and  cannot  be  killed  in  battle,  yet 
today  I  have  to  die;  the  time  has  come  forme  to  die." 
Meanwhile  Sikhandi  and  Arjuna  were  discharging  a 
continuous  and  heavy  shower  of  arrows  at  Bhisma.  At 
last  Bhisma  fell  down.  (M.B.,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter 

AMBAJANMA.  It  is  a  place  of  sacred  bath  where  the 
sage  Narada  usually  resides.  Those  who  die  here  will 
attain  salvation  (Moksa)  by  Niirada's  blessing,  accord- 
ing to  M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  83,  Verse  81. 

AMBALIKA.  (1)  The  youngest  of  the  three  daughters 
of  the  King  of  Kasl — Amba,  Ambika  and  Ambalika. 
Vicitravlrya,  son  of  Santanu  married  Ambika  and 
Ambalika.  The  mother  of  this  princess  was  Kausalya. 
2)  Pdndus  Mother.  Vicitravlrya  died  before  children 
were  born  to  his  wives.  To  avoid  the  extinction  of  the 
family,  Satyavall,  mother  of  Vicitravlrya  summoned 
Vyasa,  her  other  son  and  asked  him  to  beget  a  son  for 
Ambika.  Vyasa  obeyed  his  mother  half-heartedly. 
Ambika  did  not  like  the  dark-complexioned,  crudely 
attired  Vyasa.  Still  owing  to  the  Mother's  pressure,  she 
passively  submitted  to  the  act.  As  a  result  of  their  union 
was  born  Dhrtarastra,  who  was  blind  from  his  birth.  The 
grief-stricken  mother  called  Vyasa  again  and  asked  him 
to  have  union  with  Ambalika  this  time.  As  Ambalika's 
face  was  pale  at  the  time  of  their  union,  a  child  with 
pale  complexion  was  born  to  her.  He  was  named  Pandu. 
Having  thus  failed  in  both  attempts,  SatyavatI  asked 
Ambika  to  go  to  Vyasa  again.  At  night  Ambika  secretly 
disguised  her  waiting-maid  and  sent  her  in  her  own 
place,  to  Vyasa.  The  waiting-maid  experienced  exquisite 
pleasure  in  Vyasa's  company  and  as  a  result  a  most 
intelligent  son  was  born  to  her.  It  was  he  who  became 
the  renowned  Vidura.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  106). 

AMBARlSA  I.     A  King  of  the  Iksvaku  dynasty. 

1 )  Genealogy  and  Birth.  From  Visnu  was  born  in  the 
following  order  :  Brahma-Marici-Kasyapa.  -  Vivasvan- 
Vaivasvatamanu-Iksvaku-Vikuksi  -  Sasada  -  Puranjaya- 
Kukutstha-Anenas-Prthulasva-Prasenajit  -  Yuvanasva- 
Mandhata-Ambarlsa.  Mandhata  had  three  sons:  Amba- 
rlsa, Mucukunda  and  Purukutsa  and  fifty  daughters. 

29  AMBARlSA  I 

The  Muni    (Sage)    Saubhari  married  the  daughters. 

2)  Ambarisa's  Taga   ( sacrifice) .     In  Valmlki    Ramayana 
there  is  a  story  of  Devendra's    theft    of   the    sacrificial 
cow    from   Ambarlsa's    yagasala.  Devendra  could  not 
bear  the    thought    of  King    Ambarlsa  winning  world- 
renown  and  glory  by  performing  yagas.  Therefore  Indra 
stole  the   sacrificial    cow  and  took  it  away.  The  Upa- 
dhyaya  ( Chief  Priest )  was  alarmed  at  the    disappear- 
ance of  the  cow  and  expressed  his  opinion   to  the  King 
that  it  would  be  enough  to  sacrifice  a  human  being  in- 
stead of  the  cow.  The  King  searched  for  the  cow  in  all 
countries,  cities  and    forests.  At   last  he    reached    the 
peak  of  Bhrguturiga   where   the    sage  Rcika  lived  with 
his  wife  and  children.  The  King  explained  to    the   sage 
the  whole  story.  He  requested  him  to  sell  one  of  his  sons 
in    exchange  for    100,000    cows.  Rcika  had  three  sons. 
The  eldest  was    his  father's    favourite  and  the  youngest 
was  the  mother's  pet.  In  the  end,  Rcika  sold  the  second 
son,  SunaSsepha  in  return  for  100,000  cows. 

On  his  return  journey  with  Sunassepha  the  king  rested 
for  a  while  at  Puskara  Tlrtha.  There  Sunassepha 
happened  to  meet  his  uncle  Visvamitra  and  complain- 
ed to  him  about  his  sad  plight.  Sunassepha's  wish  was 
that  the  king's  yaga  should  be  performed  and  at  the  same 
time  his  own  life-span  should  be  extended.  Visvamitra 
promised  to  save  Sunassepha.  He  called  Madhu- 
cchandas  and  his  other  sons  and  said  to  them :  "One  of 
you  must  take  the  place  of  Ambarlsa's  sacrificial  cow 
and  save  the  life  of  Sunassepha.  God  will  bless  you." 
But  none  of  the  sons  of  Visvamitra  was  prepared  to 
become  the  sacrificial  cow.  Visvamitra  uttered  a  curse 
on  his  sons  that  they  would  have  to  spend  a  thousand 
years  on  earth,  eating  dog-flesh.  Then  he  turned  to 
Sunaisepha  and  told  him  that  if  he  prayed  to  the  gods 
at  the  time  of  Ambarlsa's  yajfla,  they  would  save  him. 
So  Sunassepha  went  to  Ambarlsa's  yagasala.  As 
ordered  by  the  assembled  guests,  Ambarlsa  bound 
Sunassepha  and  had  him  dressed  in  blood-red  robes, 
ready  for  the  sacrifice.  Sunassepha  began  to  praise  and 
pray  to  the  gods.  Soon  Indra  appeared  and  blessed  him 
with  longevity.  He  also  rewarded  Ambarlsa  for  his 
yaga.  Thus  Sunassepha  was  saved.  *  (Valmiki  Rama- 
yana Bala  Kanda,  Sarga  61). 

3)  Ambarifa  and  Durvdsas.  In  Bhagavata  we  see  a  story 
which  describes  how  the  Sudarsana  Cakra  which  emerg- 
ed from   Ambarlsa's    forehead    chased  Durvasas   in   all 
the  three  worlds.  Ambarlsa  was  a  devout  worshipper  of 
Visnu.  From  the  very  beginning  of  his  reign,  peace  and 
prosperity  spread    all    over     the  country.    Mahavisnu 
who  was  pleased  with  the  deep    piety   and   devotion  of 
Ambarlsa  appeared    to    him  and  bestowed  on  him    the 
control  of  his  (Visnu's)  Sudarsana    Cakra.    After  that 
Ambarlsa  'started    the   observance  of   EkadasI    vrata. 
The  rigour  of  the   observance  alarmed  even  Indra.  He 
decided  to  obstruct  the  observance  somehow  or  other.  At 
that  time,  Durvasas  arrived    in    devaloka.    Indra   insti- 
gated   Durvasas    to    spoil    the    EkadasI    observance  of 

Durvasas  went  to  Ambarlsa's  palace.  There  the  King 
received  him  with  due  respect  and  sent  him  to  the  river 
Kalindi  for  his  bath  and  morning  rites.  Durvasas  went 

*  The  story  of  SunasseDha  may  be  seen  with  slight  variations  in  the  Devi  Bhagavata  and  other  Puranas.  In  those  versions,  Sunassepha 
has  been  described  as  the  sacrificial  cow  at  Hariscandra's  yaga,  and  moreover,  Ajigarta  is  referred  to  as  the  father  of  Sunassepha.  (Brahmanda 
Parana,  Chapter  58  gives  the  same  story  as  in  Valmiki  Ramayana) . 




for  his  bath  and  deliberately  stayed  away  till  the  con- 
clusion of  Ambarlsa's  Ekiidail  observance.  At  the  end 
of  the  observance,  after  feeding  the  gods  with  his 
)  la'-;.,  - \inbarisa  kept  the  remaining  portion  for 
Durvasas.  After  his  bath  etc.,  Durvasas  returned,  but 
he  was  furious  when  he  was  offered  the  leavings  of  the 
food  of  the  gods  and  refused  to  take  any  food.  In  his 
anger  he  advanced  towards  Ambarisa.  A  terrible  mons- 
ter Krtya.  emanated  from  the  Maharsi  and  was  about 
to  destroy  Ambarlsa.  Ambarlsa  at  once  called  upon 
Sudarsana  Cakra,  which  appeared  instantly  and  after 
cutting  the  throat  of  Krtya,  turned  against  Durvasas. 
Terrified  by  it,  Durvasas  began  to  flee  for  life.  The 
Cakra  pursued  him  at  his  heels.  Durvasas  went  to  Indra 
and  sought  refuge  with  him.  But  the  Cakra  followed 
him  there.  Indra  pleaded  helplessness.  Then  the 
Maharsi  went  to  Brahma  and  sued  for  his  help.  There 
also  the  Cakra  pursued  him.  Brahma  sent  him  to  Siva. 
Siva  was  also  unable  to  give  him  shelter.  Sudarsana  con- 
tinued to  chase  him.  Durvasas  then  sought  shelter  with 
Mahavisnu.  Visnu  told  him  plainly  that  there  was 
no  alternative  but  to  go  and  sue  for  mercy  to  Amba- 
rlsa himself  and  advised  him  to  do  so.  At  last  Durvasas 
returned  to  Ambarlsa  and  begged  his  pardon.  Ambarlsa 
saved  him  from  Sudarsana  Cakra  and  described  to  him 
the  glory  resulting  from  the  observance  of  Ekadasi 
vrata.  (Bhagavata,  Navama  Skandha) . 
4)  Other  Details  (1)  Ambarisa  performed  a  yaga  in 
the  Yamuna  valley.  (M.B.,Adi  Parva,  Chapter  1,  Verse 
277;  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  6;  Vana  Parva, 
Chapter  129,  Verse  2). 

(2)  Maharsi    Durvasas    recalled     Ambarisa's    power. 
(M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  263,  Verse  33). 

(3)  The    Sage  Vyasa    once    told    Dharmaputra     that 
Ambarisa  was  one  of  the  16  great  kings    who  lived  in 
ancient  times.  The  16   reputed  Kings   were  :  Marutta, 
Suhotra,  Paurava,  Sibi,  Sri  Rama,   Bhaglratha,  Dilipa, 
Mandhata,  Yayati,  Ambarisa,  Sasabindu,  Gaya,  Ranti- 
deva,  Bharata,  Prthu    and  Parasurama.   (M.B.,   Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  64). 

(4)  Ambarlsa  fought  single-handed  against    thousands 
of  Kings.  (M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  64). 

(5)  He    performed  one  hundred  yagas.    (M.B.,  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  64) . 

(6)  Ambarisa  once  questioned  Indra  about  his  (Amba- 
risa's)    army  Chief    Sudeva    becoming  more  mighty 
than    himself.   (M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  98,  Verses 

(7)  Ambarisa  gave  110  crores  of  cows  to  the  Brahmins. 
(M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  234,  Verse  23). 

(8)  Ambarisa  was  also  among  the  Munis  who  committ- 
ed theft  of  Agastya's  lotuses.    (M.B.,  AnuSasana   Parva, 
Chapter  94,  Verse  24) . 

(9)  Besides    giving  cows  to  Brahmins,  Ambarisa  gave 
them  the  country  also.(M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter 
137,  Verse  8). 

AMBARlSA  II.  When  Balabhadrarama  entered  the 
lower  world  (Patala)  after  death,  among  the  Nagas 
who  welcomed  him,  there  was  one  called  "Ambarisa". 
(M.B.,  Mausala  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  16). 

AMBASTHA  I.  King  Srutayu,  who  belonged  to  the  party 
of  the  Kauravas  was  the  ruler  of  Ambastha  land  and 
so  he  was  called  Ambastha.  (M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva, 
Chapter  96,  Verses  39-40) .  He  was  killed  in  the  fight 
with  Arjuna.  (M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  93,  Verses 

60-69) . 

AMBASTHA  II.  There  was  a  hero  called  Ambastha 
among  the  warriors  on  the  side  of  the  Pandavas.  (M.B., 
Drona  Parva,  Chapter  25,  Verse  50).  He  fought 
against  King  Cedi  who  was  on  the  side  of  the  Kauravas 
and  in  the  fight  King  Ccdi  fell. 

AMBASTHA  III.     See  the  word  "VAR1VJA". 

AMBASTHAM.  A  region  in  ancient  India.  It  is  believ- 
ed that  it  was  to  the  north  of  Sindlia  (M.B.,  Sabha 
Parva,  Chapter  37,  Verse  7) . 

AMBHORUHA.  A  son  of  Sage  Visvamitra.  (M.B.,  Anu- 
sasana Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  59). 

AMBIKA  I.  Elder  sister  of  Ambalika.  (See  AMBA- 

AMBIKA  II.  Another  name  of  Parvati.  (Agni  Purana, 
Chapter  12). 

AMBUMATl.  A  river.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  83, 
Verse  56). 

AMBUVAHINI.  A  river.  (M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter 
9,  Verse  27) .  Praising  this  river  at  dawn  and  dusk  will 
bring  divine  grace.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter 
165,  Verse  20). 

AMBUVlCA.  One  of  the  Kings  of  Magadha.  He  had  a 
minister  named  Mahakarni.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter 
203,  Verses  17-19). 

AMHU.  An  Asura  in  the  period  of  the  Rgveda.  This 
Asura  had  been  doing  much  harm  to  the  hermits. 
Purukutsa  was  the  hermit  whom  he  tormented  most. 
Indra  vanquished  this  Asura  and  destroyed  seven  of 
his  cities.  (Rgveda,  Mandala  1,  Anuvaka  11,  Sukta 
63,  Khanda  7). 

AMITADHVAJA.  A  Raksasa.  ( M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chap- 
ter 227,  Verse  50). 

AMITAUJA.  A  mighty  Ksatriya  King  of  the  Paficala 
kingdom.  He  was  born  from  the  element  of  a  Raksasa 
named  Ketuman.  Before  the  Pandavas  went  to  war,  they 
had  sent  an  invitation  to  him.  He  was  one  of  the  distin- 
guished royal  allies  of  the  Pandavas.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  67,  Verse  12;  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  4, 
Verse  12;  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  71,  Verse  11). 
,  AMITRAJIT.  A  King.  In  his  country  there  were  innu- 
merable Siva  temples.  Narada  Muni  who  was  delighted 
by  this  sight,  went  to  the  Palace  and  said  to  Amitrajit: 
"In  the  city  of  Campakavati  there  is  a  Gandharva 
virgin  named  Malayagandhinl.  She  has  been  abducted 
by  Karikalaketu,  a  Raksasa.  She  has  promised  to  marry 
the  person  who  will  rescue  her  from  him.  Therefore 
please  save  her  from  the  Raksasa."  As  suggested  by 
Narada  Amitrajit  killed  Kankalaketu  in  battle  and 
recovered  Malayagandhinl  and  married  her.  Vira  was 
their  son.  (Skanda  Purana). 

AMOGHA  I.  A  Yaksa  who  accompanied  Siva  when  the 
latter  once  went  on  a  journey  to  Bhadravata.  (M.B., 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  231,  Verse  35). 

AMOGHA  II.  This  name  has  been  used  as  a  synonym  of 
Skanda.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  232,  Verse  5) . 

AMOGHA  III.  A  synonym  of  Siva.  (M.B.,  Anusasana 
Parva,  Chapter  17,  Verse  114). 

AMOGHA  IV.  A  synonym  of  Visnu.  (M.B.,  Anusasana 
Parva,  Chapter  149,  Verse  25) . 

AMOGHA(M).  An  Agni  which  originated  from  Brhas- 
pati's  family.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva  Chapter  222,  Verse 

AMOGHA.  Santanu  Maharsi's  wife.  Once  Brahma 
visited  Santanu  Maharsi's  Asrama.  As  the  Maharsi  was 




not  at  home,  it  was  Amogha  who  received  the  guest 
with  due  reverence.  Fascinated  by  the  irresistible 
charm  of  Amogha,  Brahma  had  an  involuntary  emis- 
sion of  seminal  fluid.  He  felt  ashamed  of  his  own  weak- 
ness and  left  the  Asrama  immediately.  The  Maharsi 
who  returned  to  the  Asrama  soon  after,  came  to  know 
from  his  wife  whose  semen  it  was.  He  asked  Amogha  to 
accept  Brahma  Deva's  precious  semen  and  not  to  let  it 
be  wasted.  Being  a  devoted  wife,  she  accepted  it,  but 
unable  to  bear  the  divine  pregnancy,  she  deposited  it 
in  the  water  lying  in  the  valley  of  the  Yugandhara 
mountain.  From  that  time,  it  became  a  place  of  holy 
bath,  known  as  Lohita.  It  was  by  bathing  in  this  holy 
water  that  Parasurama  washed  away  his  sin  of  annihi- 
lating the  Ksatriyas.  (Padma  Purana,  Srsti  Khanda,  55) . 
AMPITTA.  A  name  for  barbers.  'Ampitta' is  derived  from 
the  Sanskrit  word  "Ambisthah".  The  word  Ambisthah 
means  Physician.  In  olden  days  barbers  were  physicians 
also.  Going  about  from  house  to  house,  they  could  easily 
practise  both  these  professions.  Since  barbers  practised 
physic  also  they  were  called  Ambisthas.  Ampitta  is  a 
corrupted  form  of  Ambistha.  (Dravidian  Philology) . 
Barbers  sometimes  style  themselves  as  "Pandits".  It 
is  on  the  basis  of  this  that  we  have  today,  "All  Kerala 
Pandit  Sabha"  and  other  similar  names.  There  is  a 
legend  on  the  basis  of  which  this  community  has  assum- 
ed the  title  of  "Pandit". 

Long  ago  when  Sri  Buddha  was  about  to  go  to  the 
forest  for  performing  Tapas,  thousands  of  people  flocked 
together  to  have  his  darsana.  Buddha  wished  to  continue 
his  journey  after  shaving  his  head.  Buddha  asked  loudly 
whether  anyone  in  the  crowd  was  prepared  to  shave 
his  head.  Only  a  single  man  came  forward  cheerfully  to 
do  that  work.  Buddha  turned  to  him  and  said:  "My 
dear  friend,  you  are  the  only  Pandit  in  this  crowd.  You 
have  the  wisdom  to  understand  that  there  is  nothing 
disgraceful  in  shaving  one's  head." 
He  shaved  Buddha's  head.  From  that  day  his  descen- 
dants _came  to  be  known  as  "Pandits". 
AMRTA.  Daughter  of  a  King  of  Magadha.  She  was  the 
wife  of  Anasva  and  mother  of  Pariksit.  (M.B.,  Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  95,  Verse  41) . 

AMRTAM.  A  delicious  and  precious  food  obtained  from 
the  ocean  of  Milk  when  the  Devas  and  Asuras  churned 
it.  In  Chapter  152  of  Agni  Purana,  the  word  "Mrtam" 
is  defined  as  wealth  received  by  begging  and  "Amrtam" 
as  wealth  received  without  begging,  and  "Pramrtam" 
as  another  kind  of  wealth  obtained  without  begging. 
1)  Cause  of  Ksirabdhi-mathanam.  (Churning  of  the  Sea 
of  Milk) — Once  when  Maharsi  Durvasas  was  travelling 
through  a  forest,  he  met  the  Apsara  woman,  Menaka, 
with  a  garland  of  Kalpaka  flowers  in  her  hand.  The 
fragrance  of  the  flowers  filled  the  whole  forest.  Durvasas 
approached  Menaka  and  requested  her  to  give  the  gar- 
land to  him.  The  Vidyadharl  (Apsara  woman)  prostrat- 
ed before  the  Maharsi  with  reverence  and  presented 
the  garland  to  him.  Wearing  that  garland  on  his  hair, 
Durvasas  went  to  devaloka. 

There  he  saw  Indra  riding  on  his  elephant,  Airavata, 
accompanied  by  his  retinue  of  Devas.  The  Maharsi  took 
the  rare  garland  from  his  head  and  presented  it  to 
Indra,  the  King  of  Devas.  Indra  received  the  garland 
and  placed  it  on  Airavata's  head.  The  elephant  was 
attracted  by  the  fragrance  of  the  garland  and  took  it  in 

its  trunk,  examined  it  by  smelling  it   and  then  threw  it 
on  the  ground. 

Durvasas,  who  became  angry  at  the  way  in  which  his 
garland  was  slighted  by  Indra  said  to  him:  "Since 
you  have  treated  my  garland  with  disrespect,  the  gJory 
and  prosperity  of  devaloka  will  perish  !"  On  hearing 
the  curse,  Indra  alighted  from  the  elephant,  frightened. 
He  begged  pardon  of  the  Maharsi.  The  fuiious  Muni 
continued:  "I  am  not  soft-hearted;  nor  am  I  of  a  for- 
giving nature.  Other  Munis  may  forgive.  Remember,  I 
am  Durvasas.  You  have  become  so  haughty  because 
other  Munis  like  Vasistha  and  Gautama  have  been  flat- 
tering you  too  much."  Having  said  this  Durvasas  went 
his  way.  Indra  returned  to  Amaravatl. 
From  that  day  the  glory  of  devaloka  began  to  decline. 
The  three  worlds  became  dull.  Even  the  plants  and 
shrubs  began  to  wither.  The  performance  of  yagas  came 
to  an  end.  The  Devas  began  to  be  affected  by  the 
infirmities  of  old  age.  Taking  advantage  of  this  situation, 
the  Asuras  started  preparations  for  opposing  the  Devas. 
Under  the  oppression  of  the  Asuras,  the  Devas  groaned 
in  distress.  Led  by  Agni  Deva  they  sought  refuge  under 
Brahma.  Brahma  led  them  to  Mahavisnu.  They  all  join- 
ed in  praising  Visnu  who  appeared  and  told  them  like 
this:  "O  Gods !  I  shall  enhance  your  glory.  Do  as  I 
tell  you.  Along  with  the  Asuras  bring  all  kinds  of  medi- 
cinal herbs  and  deposit  them  in  the  ocean  of  Milk. 
Obtain  Amrtam  from  it  by  churning  it  with  Mahameru 
as  the  churning  staff  and  Vasuki  as  the  rope.  The 
Amrtam  (Amrta)  which  will  be  produced  by  churning 
the  Milk  sea,  will  make  you  strong  and  deathless.  I 
shall  see  that  the  Asuras  will  share  in  your  troubles  but 
not  in  enjoying  Amrtam." 

2)  Churning  of  the  Milk  Sea.  After  Visnu  had  vanished, 
the  Devas  made  a  treaty  with  the  Asuras  and  began  to 
work  for  getting  Amrtam.  All  of  them  joined  together 
in  bringing  various  kinds  of  medicinal  herbs  and  after 
putting  them  in  the  Milk  sea  which  was  as  clear  as  the 
cloudless  sky,  began  to  churn  it,  using  Manthara  Moun- 
tain as  the  churning  staff  and  snake  Vasuki  as  the  rope. 
The  party  of  Devas  was  posted  at  the  tail-end  of  Vasuki 
while  the  Asuras  took  their  stand  at  the  head.  The 
Asuras  became  enervated  by  the  fiery  breath  coming  out 
of  Vasuki's  mouth.  The  clouds  which  were  blown  by 
that  breath  invigorated  the  Devas. 

Mahavisnu  transformed  himself  into  a  tortoise,  and 
sitting  in  the  middle  of  the  Milk  Sea  served  as  the 
foundation  for  the  Manthara  Mountain,  the  churning 
staff.  Assuming  another  form,  invisible  both  to  Devas 
and  Asuras,  Mahavisnu  pressed  down  the  Manthara 
Mountain  from  above. 

While  churning  the  Milk  Sea  like  this,  the  first  object 
that  rose  to  the  surface  was  Kamadhenu.  Both  Devas 
and  Asuras  were  strongly  attracted  towards  Kamadhenu 
While  all  were  standing  spellbound,  VarumdevI  with 
her  enchanting  dreamy  eyes  next  appeared  on  the  sur- 
face. Parijatam  was  the  third  to  appear.  Fourth,  a  group 
of  Apsara  women  of  marvellous  beauty  floated  up.  The 
Moon  appeared  as  the  fifth.  Siva  received  the  Moon. 
The  venom  which  came  out  of  the  Milk  Sea  as  the 
sixth  item,  was  absorbed  by  Nagas.  After  that  arose 
Bhagavan  Dhanvantari,  dressed  in  pure  white  robes 
and  carrying  a  Kamandalu  in  his  hand  filled  with 
Amrtam.  All  were  delighted  at  this  sight.  Next  Maha- 
laksmi  made  her  appearance  in  all  her  glory  with  a 




lotus  in  her  hand  and  seated  in  an  open  lotus  flower. 
Gandharvas  sang  celestial  songs  in  her  presence ; 
Apsara  women  danced.  For  her  bath,  the  Gariga  river 
arrived  there  with  her  tributaries.  The  Milk  Sea  itself 
took  on  physical  form  and  offered  her  a  garland  of  ever- 
fresh  lotus  flowers.  Brahma  bedecked  her  with  orna- 
ments. After  that  Laksmldevi,  fully  adorned  in  all  her 
magnificent  jewels,  in  the  presence  of  all  Devas,  joined 
the  bosom  of  Mahavisnu.  The  Asuras  were  displeased 
at  it.  They  snatched  the  pot  of  Amrtam  from  Dhan- 
vantari  and  fled  away. 

3)  How  Amrtam  was  recovered.    With  the  loss  of  Amrtam, 
the  Devas  were  in  a   fix.  They   began   to  consider  how 
the   pot  of  Amrtam    could  be  recovered.    Accordingly 
Mahavisnu  transformed  himself  into  a  celestial  virgin, 
Mohini,  of  extraordinary  beauty.  She  approached   the 
Asuras  as  a  shy  girl.   The  Asuras  were   enchanted   by 
her   surpassing  beauty.    They    asked    her,    "Who    are 
you  ?"  Looking  down   on  the  ground,  Mohini  replied: 
"I  am  the  little  sister  of  Dhanvantari.  By  the    time  I 
came  out  of  the  Milk  Sea,  the  Devas   and  Asuras  had 
already  gone.  Being  lonely  I  am  going  about  in  search 
of  a  suitable  mate." 

On  hearing  her  words,  the  Asuras  began  to  make 
friends  with  her  one  by  one,  determined  not  to  waste 
this  opportunity.  They  told  her  that  she  should  distri- 
bute Amrtam  to  all  of  them  and  in  the  end  she  should 
marry  one  of  them.  Mohini  agreed,  but  added  :  "All 
of  you  should  close  your  eyes.  I  shall  serve  Amrtam 
to  all.  He  who  opens  his  eyes  last,  must  serve  Amrtam 
to  me  and  he  will  marry  me". 

All  of  them  accepted  this  condition.  They  sat  in  front 
of  Mohini  with  closed  eyes.  In  a  moment  Mohini  left 
the  place  with  the  pot  of  Amrtam  and  went  to  deva- 

4)  Rdhu's  neck    is  cut.     When  the  Asuras  opened  their 
eyes,    Mohini    was  not  to    be    seen.  Finding  that  they 
were  betrayed,    they  were    in  great  perplexity.  All  of 
them  pursued   Mohini  to   devaloka.     Devas    had    put 
the  Sun   and  Moon  gods  on  guard    duty  at  the  gates 
of  devaloka.   At  the  instance   of  the  Asuras,    Rahu  in 
disguise  entered    the     divine  assembly  chamber.    The   , 
Sun  and  Moon  gods  detected  him  and   Visnu  with  his 
weapon,  Sudarsana  Cakra  cut  open  his  neck.  Swearing 
that  he  would  wreak  vengeance  on  the  Sun  and  Moon 
Rahu  returned.   In  the  8th  Skandha  of Bhagavata  it   is 
said  that   even  now  from  time  to  time  Rahu    swallows 
the  Sun  and  Moon,  but  they   escape  through  the  open 
gash  in  his  neck  and  this  is  known  as  solar  eclipse  and 
lunar  eclipse. 

5)  Defeat  of  the  Asuras.     Indra  and  all  other  gods  took 
Amrtam.  The  enraged  Asuras  attacked  the  gods,   who 
had  gained  strength  and   vigour  by    taking  Amrtam. 
The  Asuras  were  driven  away  in  all  directions.  All  the 
three  worlds  began  to  enjoy  glory  and  prosperity  again. 

6)  Kalakuta.     The  story   of  how    the    deadly    poison, 
Kulakiita  arose  at  the  churning  of  the  ocean  of  Milk, 
is  given  in  M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  18,  Verses  42-45, 
as  follows  :  After   many   precious   things  had  come  up 
Kalakuta  poison  with  fumes  and   flames,    appeared  on 
the   surface    of   the  ocean.    Its  strong   smell  caused  a 
stupor  in  all  the  three  worlds.  Fearing  that  the  world 
will  perish,    Brahma  requested    Siva    to   swallow    that 
poison.    Siva    gulped    it   down,   but   stopped  it   in  his 
throat.  From  that  day  he  became  "Nilakantha". 

7)  The  story  of  Airdvata.  Indra's  tusker  Airavata  was 
responsible  for  the  churning  of  the  ocean  of  Milk.  But 
in  the  Mahabharata,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  18,  Verse  42 
it  is  said  that  a  white  elephant  with  four  tusks  arose 
during  the  churning  of  the  ocean  of  Milk  and  that 
Dcvendra  caught  and  tamed  it.  This  is  an  obvious 
contradiction.  Besides,  in  Valmlki  Ramayana,  Aranya- 
kanda,  14th  Sarga,  the  wounded  Jatayu  describing  his 
family  history  to  Sri  Rama,  gives  the  following  account 
about  the  origin  of  Airavata  : 

Kasyapa,  one  of  the  Prajapalis,  married  the  eight 
daughters  of  Daksa.  One  of  them  named  Krodhavasa 
had  ten  daughters  by  Kasyapa.  They  were:  Mrgi,  Mrga- 
mada,  Hari,  Bhadramada.,  Mataiigl,  Sarduh,  Sveta, 
Surabhi,  Surasa  and  Kadru.  Of  them  Bhadramada 
gave  birth  to  a  daughter,  Iravati.  The  tusker  Airavata 
is  Iravati's  son. 

An  explanation  for  this  discrepancy  may  be  seen  in 
Visnu  Purana,  3rd  Section,  Chapter  1.  Now  six 
Manvantaras  have  passed  (See  'MANVANTARA') . 
This  is  the  seventh  Manvantara.  Each  Manvantara 
has  a  new  Indra.  According  to  this,  different  Indras 
have  their  own  Airavatas.  This  is  the  only  explanation 
for  this  apparent  contradiction. 

8)  Amrtam  and  Garuda.  There  is  another  story  about 
Amrtam  which  says  that  Garuda  once  went  to  deva- 
loka and  brought  Amrtam  from  there  to  be  given  to 
the  Nagas,  but  Devendra  came  down  and  took  it  back. 
This  story  is  given  in  Mahabharata  from  Chapter  27 
onwards.  Vinata,  a  wife  of  Kasyapa  gave  birth  to 
Garuda  and  Kadru  and  her  sister  gave  birth  to  the 
Nagas.  Once  there  was  a  dispute  between  Vinata  and 
Kadru.  Vinata  said  that  the  hairs  on  the  tail  of  Uccai- 
sravas,  Devendra's  horse,  were  white  but  Kadru 
asserted  that  they  were  black.  To  settle  the  dispute  they 
made  a  bet.  The  condition  was  that  the  loser  must 
become  the  servant  maid  of  the  winner.  As  instructed 
by  Kadru,  some  of  the  Nagas  went  in  advance  and 
hung  down  from  the  tail  of  Uccaissravas,  thus  giving  the 
false  appearance  of  a  tail  with  black  hairs.  By  this  trick 
Vinata  lost  the  bet  and  had  to  become  Kadru's  servant 
maid.  As  a  result  of  it,  the  task  of  looking  after  Kadru's 
children  became  Garuda's  duty.  Kadru  told  him  that 
if  he  fetched  Amrtam  from  devaloka  and  gave  it  to  the 
Nagas,  she  was  prepared  to  release  him  from  the  bond- 
age. So  Garuda  flew  up  to  devaloka,  fought  with  the 
gods  and  defeated  them.  He  returned  with  the  pot  of 
Amrtam  and  gave  it  to  the  Nagas.  The  Nagas  went 
to  take  their  bath  after  placing  the  pot  on  darbha  grass 
spread  on  the  floor.  Just  then  Devendra  swooped  down 
and  carried  away  the  pot  of  Amrtam  to  devaloka. 
When  the  Nagas  returned  after  their  purifying  bath, 
the  pot  was  not  to  be  seen.  In  their  greed  they  began 
to  lick  the  darbha  grass  on  which  the  pot  was  placed. 
The  sharp  edge  of  the  grass  cut  their  tongues  into  two. 
This  is  why  the  Nagas  (snakes)  came  to  have  forked 

Amrtam  which  has  been  thus  recovered  after  many 
such  adventures,  is  still  preserved  carefully  in  devaloka. 
[  (1)  M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  17.  (2)  M.B.,  Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  27,  verse  16.  (3)  M.B.  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  30,  Verse  2.  (4)  Valmlki  Ramayana,  Aranya 
Kanda,  35th  Sarga.  (5)  Visnu  Purana,  Section  1, 
Chapter  9.  (6)  Agni  Purana,  Chapter  152.  (7)  Bhaga- 
vata, 8th  Skandha.  (8)  Uttara  Ramayana.] 




AMSA.     A  sage  of  the  family  of  Marlci. 

1)  Genealogy.     He  was    descended  from  Visnu  through 
Brahma,  Marlci  and  Kasyapa. 

2)  Birth.     Marlci  was  one  of  the  six  sons,    all   rsis,  of 
Brahma.    These   six    sons,    born    parthogenetically    of 
Brahma,  were  :  Marlci,  Aiigiras,  Atri,  Pulastya,  Pulaha 
and  Kratu.  Marlci  had  a  son  named  Kasyapa.  Kasyapa 
married  the  thirteen  daughters  of  Daksa.  The  eldest  of 
them,  Aditi,  gave  birth  to  twelve  sonsDhata,  Aryaman, 
Mitra,  Sakra,  Varuna,  Arhsa,  Bhaga,  Vivasvan,  Pusan, 
Savita,    Tvasta     and   Visnu.  Arhia  is     one     of    these 
twelve  sons  who  have  been  called  the    twelve  Adityas. 
(See  Chapter  65  of  Adi  Parva  of  the  Mahabharata) . 

3)  Events.     The  Mahabharata  says  (Sloka  66,  Chapter 
123)  that  Arhsa  was  present  at  the  time  of  Arjuna's  birth 
when  several  devas    had  come  there    to  see  the   infant. 
In  Sloka  34,  Chapter  45  of  Salya  Parva  it  is  said   that 
Arhsa  was  present  on  the  occasion  of  the   Abhiseka    of 
Skandadeva.  Arhsa  is  said  to  have  presented  to  Skanda- 
deva    five   good     warriors  :     Parigha,     Vata,    Bhima, 
Dahana  and  Dahati. 

AMSAPAYA.  Name  of  a  priest  (Rtvik)  qualified  to 
officiate  at  a  sacrifice.  This  priest  officiated  at  the  sacri- 
fice (yajna)  performed  by  Brahma  at  Puskaraksetra. 
(See  Chapter  34  of  Padma  Purana) . 

AMSAVATARA.  The  incarnation  of  God  on  earth  is 
called  avatara.  When  the  incarnation  is  only  partial, 
that  is,  when  only  some  of  the  divine  elements  incarnate, 
it  is  called  amsavatara  (Arhsa  =  part).  Chapters  54  to 
64  of  Adi  Parva  of  the  Mahabharata  give  us  a  list  of 
the  gods  who  have  incarnated  partially.  The  following 
list  of  devas  and  their  arhsavataras  is  based  upon  the 
account  given  in  the  fourth  Skandha  of  Sri  MahadevI 
Bhaga  vata. 

Name  of  the  god  Name  of  the  amsavatara 

1 .  Kasyapa  Vasudeva 

2.  Adisesa  Balabhadra 

3.  Narayanarsi  Sri  Krsna 

4.  Yamadharma  Yudhisthira 

5.  Asvimdevas  Nakula  and  Sahadeva 

6.  Dharma  Vidura 

7.  Siva  Asvatthama 

8.  Gandharvaraja  Devaka 

9.  Astavasu  Bhisma 

10.  Marudgana  Krpa  ;  Krtavarma 

1 1 .  Aditi  Devaki 

12.  Nararsi  Arjuna 

13.  Vayu  Bhimasena 

14.  Surya  Kama 

15.  Brhaspati  Drona 

16.  Varuna  Santanu 

17.  Marut  Virata 

18.  Hamsa  Dhrtaras(ra 

19.  Dvapara  Sakuni 

20.  Pavaka  Dhrstadyumna 

21.  Kali  Duryodhana 

22.  Raksasa  Sikhandl 

23.  Varuna  Drupada 

24.  Visvedevas  Sons  of  Pancali 

25.  Dhrti  Mldrl 

26.  Vipracitti  Jarasandha 

27.  Hayagriva  Kesi 

28.  Baskala  Bhagadatta 

29.  Lamba  Pralamba 

30.  Sanatkumara  Pradyumna 

Name  of  the  god 

31.  LaksmI 

32.  Sidd'hi 

33.  Mad 

34.  Jaya 

35.  Vijaya 

36.  Hiranyaksa 

37.  Hiranyakasipu 

38.  Ravana 

39.  Kumbhakarna 

40.  Prahlada 

41.  Kalanemi 

42.  Anuhlada 

43.  Khara 

Name  of  the  amsavatara 














(For  more  details  see  under  the  word,  AVATARA) . 

AMSUDHANAPATTANA.  Name  of  an  ancient  tovn  in 
North  India.  Bharata  passed  through  this  town  while 
going  to  Ayodhya  from  Kekaya  after  Dasaratha's  death. 
Valmiki  has  described  this  town  in  the  Ramayana  in 
this  context. 

AMSUMAN.  Name  of  a  King  belonging  to  the  Solar 
dynasty  (Surya  Variisa) . 

1 )  Genealogy.  Arhsuman  was  descended  from  Visnu 
through  Brahma-Marlci-Kasyapa-Vivasvan-Vaivasvata- 
manu-Iksvaku-Vikuksi-SaSda-Puranjaya  -  Kakutstha  - 
Anenas-Prthulasva-Prasenajit  -  Yuvanasva  -  Mandhata- 
Purukutsa-Trasadasyu-Anaranya  -  Aryawan  -  Vasuma- 
candra-RohitasVa  -  Harita  -  Cuncu  -  Sudeva  -  Bharuka- 

2)  Birth.     Sagara,  a  king  of  the  Surya  varhsa,(  mention- 
ed   above)    had   two  wives,   Sumati    (Vaidarbhl)  and 
Kesini  (Saiba)  by    name.    Kesini  gave    birth  to   a  son 
named  Asamanjas.  Arhsuman  was  the  son  of  Asamanjas 
and  the   father  of  the   famous  Bhagiratha.    (See  under 
the  title,  BHAGlRATHA). 

3)  Some  other  details.     Arhsuman  was   one  of  the  Kings 
who    attended    the    Svayarhvara    of    Pancali.    (Vide 
Sloka    11,  Chapter    185    of  Adi    Parva    of  the  Maha- 
bharata) . 

AJ/lSUMAN  II.  There  is  a  reference  to  one  Arhsuman 
in  the  course  of  the  description  of  the  Visvedevas. 

AMSUMAN  III.  King  of  Bhoja  who  was  killed  by 
Drona  in  the  war  at  Kuruksetra  (Vide  Sloka  H, 
Chapter  6  ofKarna  Parva). 

AMSUMATI.  The  daughter  of  the  Gandharva  King 
named  Dramila.  Her  story  is  narrated  in  the  Siva 
Purana  to  illustrate  the  benefits  of  performing  the  Pra- 
dosa-Vrata.  Suta  expatiates  on  the  importance  and 
advantages  of  Pradosa-Vrata  to  a  number  of  sages 
in  Naimisaranya.  King  Satyaratha  was  a  scrupulous 
observer  of  Pradosa-Vrata.  Unfortunately  he  defaulted 
in  his  observance  of  the  Vrata  owing  to  unavoidable 
circumstances  and,  after  his  death,  was  born  again  as 
the  King  of  Vidarbha.  He  was  killed  in  a  battle  by  the 
King  of  Salva  and  his  wife,  pregnant  at  that  time,  fled 
to  a  forest.  She  gave  birth  to  a  son  on  the  bank  of  a 
river.  Then,  when  she  stepped  into  the  river  to  drink 
some  water,  she  was  carried  away  by  a  crocodile.  Pre- 
sently a  Brahmin  woman  named  Usa  happened  to  pass 
that  way  with  her  son  named  Sucivrata.  Seeing  a  new- 
born infant  there,  that  Brahmin  woman  took  him,  gave 
him  the  name,  Dharmagupta  and  brought  him  up  as 
her  own  son.  According  to  the  advice  of  a  pious  Brah- 
min named  Sandilya,  both  Sucivrata  and  Dharmagupta 




started  performing  Pradosa-Vrata.  Lord  Siva  was  pleas- 
ed with  them  and  gave  them  much  wealth.  Dharma- 
gupta  happened  to  meet  Arhsumatl,  daughter  of  the 
Gandharva  King,  Dramila,  one  day  in  a  forest  and 
they  fell  in  love  with  each  other.  Dramila  came  to 
know  of  their  love  and  so  gave  his  daughter  in  marriage 
to  Dharmagupta.  As  a  result  of  the  wealth  and  power 
which  he  had  acquired  by  observing  strictly  Pradosa- 
Vrata  Dharmagupta  was  able  to  return  to  Vidarbha, 
defeat  King  S'.lva  and  regain  his  kingdom  from  him. 

AMURTARAYAS.  He  was  a  renowned  King  of  ancient 
Bharata  and  the  father  of  King  Gaya.  Amurtarayas 
received  a  sword  from  Puru.  (M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chap- 
ter 166,  Verse  7  5). 

ANADIPAKA.      (See  Pancatantra ) . 

ANADHRSTI  I.     A  King  of  the  Puru  dynasty. 

1 )  Genealogy.  Descended  from  Visnu  thus  :  Visnu- 
Brahma-Atri-Candra-Budha-Pururavas-Ayus  -  Nahusa  - 
Yayati-Puru-Janamejaya  -  Pracinvan  -  Namasyu  -  Vita- 
bhaya-Sundu-Bahuvidha-Samyati-Rahovadl  -  Raudras- 


Anadhrsti  is  a  son  born  to  Raudrasva  by  Misrakesi,  an 

Apsar"  woman.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  94,  Verses 

8-12) .  Anadhrsti  has  two  synonyms,  Rceyu  and  Anvag- 


ANADHRSTI  II.  Verse  58,  Chapter  14  of  Sabha  Parva 
mentions  seven  great  Yadavas.  One  Anadhrsti  is  named 
amongst  the  seven.  This  Anadhrsji  was  present  at  the 
marriage  of  Abhimanyu  at  Ipaplavanagara.  (M.B., 
Virata  Parva,  Chapter  72,  Verse  22) .  There  was  one 
Anadhrsji  also  amongst  the  warriors  who  encompassed 
Arjuna  and  Krsna  at  the  battle-field  of  Kuruksetra. 
(M.B.,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  151,  Verse  67) .  He  was 
the  son  of  King  Vrddhaksema.  Hence  he  was  called 
Varddhaksemi  also. 

ANADHRSYA.  One  of  the  Kauravas.  ( M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  67,  Verse  105) . 


ANAGHA  I.  Son  of  Vasistfia.  He  had  seven  sons,  by 
his  wife  Urja.  They  were:  Rajas,  Gotra,  Urdhvabahu, 
Savana,  Anagha,  Sutapas  and  Sukra.  Holy  characters, 
they  became  the  saptarsis  of  the  age  of  the  third  Manu. 

ANAGHA  II.  was  a  Gandharva.  He  participated  in  the 
birthday  celebrations  of  Arjuna.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  122,  Verse  5o). 

ANAGHA  III.  A  king  called  Anagha  is  referred  to  in 
Verse  22,  Chapter  8  of  M.B. 

ANAGHA  IV.  Skanda  has  a  synonym,  Anagha  as  well. 
(M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  232,  Verse  5) . 

ANAGHA  V.  A  bird  named  Anagha  is  mentioned 
among  the  children  of  Garuda.  (M.B.,  Udyoga  Parva, 
Chapter  101,  Verse  12). 

ANAGHA  VI.  Used  as  a  synonym  of  Siva.  (M.B., 
Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  1 7,  Verse  38) . 

ANAGHA  VII.  A  synonym  of  Visnu.  (M.B.,  Anusasana 
Parva,  Chapter  149,  Verse  29). 

ANAGHAM.  A  place  in  ancient  India.  (M.B.,  Sabha 
Parva,  Chapter  30,  Verse  9) . 

ANAGNI(S).  They  are  Pitrs.  Pitrs  like  Agnisvattas, 
Barhisads,  Anagnis,  Sagnis  were  offsprings  of  Brahma. 
Two  damsels,  Mena  and  Dharim  were  born  to  them 
of  Svadha.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  20) . 

ANAL  A  I.  A  daughter  of  Daksa.  Some  of  the  other 
daughters  are  Aditi,  Dili,  Danu,  Kalika,  Tamra, 
Krodhavasa,  Manu  and  Anala.  These  daughters  were 

married  to  Kas"yapa,  son  of  Marici.  Trees,  creepers  etc. 
owe  their  origin  to  Anala.  (Valmlki  Ramayana,  Aranya 
kanda,  Canto  14) . 

ANALA  II.  Another  Anala  is  referred  to  in  Verse  71 
Chapter  66  of  Adi  Parva,  in  M.B.  This  Anala  was  the 
wife  of  KaSyapa  and  a  great  granddaughter  of  Krodha- 
vasa, the  daughter  of  Daksa.  Krodhavasa  begot  Sveta, 
and  she  Surabhl ;  Rohini  was  the  daughter  of  Surabhl 
and  Anala  was  Rohini's  daughter. 

ANALA  III.  Daughter  of  Malyavan  born  of  Sundarl. 
She  was  married  to  Vi^vavasu.  KumbhinasI  was  her 
daughter.  (Valmlki  Ramayana,  Uttarakanda). 

ANALAMBA.  A  sacred  pool.  A  bath  in  the  pool  is  as 
efficacious  as  the  Purusamedha  yajna.  (M.B.,  Anu- 
sasana Parva,  Chapter  25,  Verse  32) . 

ANAMITRA  I.  A  king  of  the  Solar  dynasty.  The 
Atmapurana  refers  to  him  as  the  son  of  Nighna. 

ANAMITRA  II.  Anamitra,  son  of  Dhrs{a  is  referred  to 
as  a  king  of  the  Yadavas  in  Atmapurana. 

ANAMITRA  III.  One  Anamitra,  son  of  Vrsni  is  refer- 
red to  in  Matsyapurana.  He  was  the  father  of  Sini. 

ANAMITRA  IV.  A  son  born  to  King  Krosta  and  his 
wife  Madrl. 

ANAMITRA.  Father  of  Caksusa,  the  Manu  of  the  6th 
Manvantara  and  son  of  sage  Anamitra.  (SeeAnanda). 

ANANATA.     A  sage.  (Rgveda,  Mandala  4,  Sukta    175) . 

ANANGA  I.  Son  of  Kardamaprajapati,  and  a  king 
reputed  for  his  love  of  the  people  and  unparallelled  integ- 
rity. He  had  a  son  called  Atibala.  (M.B.  Santi  Parva, 
Chapter  59,  Verse  91). 

ANAlsfGA  II.      (See  Kamadeva) . 

ANANGA.  A  river  in  ancient  India.  (M.B.,  Bhlsma 
Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  35) . 

ANANTA  I.     (ADISESA) .    ' 

1)  Genealogy.     Mahavisnu   begot   Brahma    and  he   the 
Prajapatis  and   Ananta    (Adisesa)  is  one  of  the  Praja- 
patis.    (Valmlki    Ramayana,   Aranyakanda,  Canto   14, 
Verse    7) .   Ananta  is   also    referred    to     as  the  son    of 
Katyapa,  one  of  the  Prajapatis   born  ofKadru.  (M.B., 
Adi    Parva,  Chapter  105,  Verse  41).  Also  Balabhadra- 
rama,  elder  brother  of  Sri  Krsna  was  a  partial  incarna- 
tion of  Ananta. 

2)  Differences   with   mother.     Vinata  and    Kadru   were 
two  wives  of  Kasyapa  prajapati.  Garuda  was  born   as 
Vinata'sson  and  numerous  serpents  like  Ananta,  Vasuki, 
Taksaka,   Karkkofaka  were    sons    of  Kadru.    Once    a 
controversy  developed  between  Vinata  and  Kadru,  the 
latter   saying   that  there  were  a  few  black  hairs  on  the 
tail   of  Airavata   and  the   former    denying    it.    It    was 
agreed    that   she  who  proved  wrong  in    the    argument 
would  become  the  slave  of  the  other.  To   prove  herself 
to  be   right  Kadru,  the   same  night,  asked  her  sons  to 
go    and  stay  suspended  in  the  hairs  of  Airavata's  tail. 
Some    of  the   sons   agreed     to  do   so,   while  her  other 
(prominent)    sons  like  Ananta  expressed  their   disincli 
nation  to  do  such  an  unethical  act.  Kadru  cursed  these 
disobedient  children  of  hers  to  die  at  the  serpent  yajna 
of  Janamejaya,  whereupon  Ananta  and  his    supporters 
departed  in  sorrow.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65). 

3)  Ananta's   new  engagement.     Departing    thus  from    his 
mother   Ananta   visited   sacred    centres    like    Gandha- 
madana,  Badari  and  practised  austerities.  And,  Brahma 
appeared   before  Ananta  and  asked  him  not   to   worry, 
but    to    go  to  the  nether  world  and  support  the   world 
on  his  hoods.  Brahma  also  told  him  that  Garuda  would 
render  him  all  help  in  the  new    task.  Blessed  thus    by 



Brahma,  Ananta  gladly  took  up  the   new  job.     (M.B., 
Adi  Parva,  Chapter  36,  Verse  24). 

4)  Ananta  has  another  abode  in  the  palace  of  Varuna 
in    the  west.  (M.B.,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  110,  Verse 

5)  Atlanta's    prowess.     About    Ananta's  prowess  Visnu 
Parana   has   the   following    to  say  :  At  the  bottom  of 
Patala  there  is  a  base  (Tamasic)  form  of  Visnu   called 
Adisesa.    Even  the  Danavas  and  the   Daityas   are    not 
able     to    describe    the    attributes    of  that    form.    The 
Siddhas  call   this    Adisesa   Ananta  who  is  worshipped 
by   Devas    and    rsis.  Ananta  has  1000    heads    and    the 
Svastika  mark  which   is  clearly  visible    is  his  ornament. 
The  1000  gems  in  his    head  illuminate  all  regions,  and 
he  renders  the  Asuras  powerless  for  the  good   of  all  the 
worlds.    Adisesa  whose   eyes  ever    rotate   due    to    the 
overflow  of  his  prowess,  and  who  wears   blue  apparel 
and   garlands   of  white  gems  shines  forth  like   another 
Mount  Kailasa  beautified  with  garlands  of  clouds  and 
by  the  flow  of  the  Gaiiga.  Sri  Devi  and  Varuni  Devi  serve 
Ananta   who  holds   in  one  hand  a  larhgala  and   in  the 
other  a  mace  (musala) .  As  the  deluge  (end  of  a  yuga 
Kalpanta)   approaches  Rudra  emanates  from    the  faces 
of  Ananta    and   consumes  the  three    worlds.    Adisesa 
dwells  in  the  nether  world  wearing  the  whole   earth   as 
a  crown.  Even  the  Devas  cannot  gauge  his  nature,  shape, 
prowess  etc.  When  he  yawns  the  earth  and  waters  shake 
and  shiver.  The  Gandharvas,  Nagas,    Caranas  etc.    fail 
to  understand  the  real  extent  of  his  attributes,  and  that 
is  why  this  strange  being  is  called  Ananta  (endless) .    It 
was  by  worshipping  Ananta  and  by  his  grace    that  sage 
Garga   was    able   to  master  the  sciences    of  astronomy 
and    causation     (nimitta).     (Visnu  Purana,    Part    2, 
Chapter  5) . 

6)  The  land  qf  Ananta.     Patala  is    Ananta's  world,    and 
at  its  bottom  there  is  a  spot  called  Ananta.    That   spot 
is  30000  yojanas  in  extent,  and  here  lives  Ananta.  He  is 
known  as  Sankarsana  also.  He  bears  the   whole  nether 
world  as  though  it  were  a   mustard    seed.    And,  when 
he  thinks  of  destroying    the    entire   world    the  Rudra 
called  Saiikarsana  will  appear  with    other  Rudras    and 
weapons  like  tridents    (Trisula).  Other  serpents  bow  at 
the    feet   of  Ananta,  who  is    supremely    beautiful  with 
divine  lustre.  (Devi  Bhagavata,  Skandha  8) . 

ANANTA  II.  A  synonym  of  the  Sun  God.  (M.B.,  Vana 
Parva,  Chapter  3,  Verse  24) . 

ANANTA  III.  A  synonym  of  Sri  Krsna.  (M.B.,  Udyoga 
Parva,  Chapter  70,  Verse  14). 

ANANTA  IV.  One  of  the  military  captains  of  Skanda. 
(M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  45,  Verse  57) . 

ANANTA  V.  A  synonym  of  Visnu.  (M.B.,  Anusasana 
Parva,  Chapter  149,  Verse  83). 

ANANTA  VI.  A  synonym  of  Siva.  (M.B.,  Anusasana 
Parva, _Chapter  17,  Verse  135). 

ANANTA.     Wife  of  Janamejaya,  son  of  King  Puru. 

ANANTA.  The  abode  of  Ananta  in  the  nether  regions. 
(Devi  Bhagavata,  Canto  8).  (There  are  certain  indica- 
tions that  Ananta  refers  to  Trivandrum,  Capital  city  of 
the  Kerala  State.  Explanations  of  words  like  Svarga, 
Bhumi,  Patala,  Ananta,  Deva,  Asura,  throw  much  light 
on  this  inference). 

ANANTAVIJAYAM.  The  conch  of  Dharmaputra.  It 
was  blown  during  the  great  war.  (M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva, 
Chapter  25,  Verse  15). 

ANAPAYACOLA.  A  King  of  the  Cola  country,  1063- 
1112.  The  Tamil  poet  Sekhilar  who  composed  the 
twelfth  song  of  the  great  Saiva  religious  book  called 
Tirumurayil  was  a  minister  of  this  King. 

ANARAKATlRTHA.  A  sacred  pool.  Brahma,  along 
with  Visnu  and  others  bathe  daily  in  this  sacred  pool. 
Therefore,  it  is  said  that  the  sins  of  all  those  who  bathe 
in  the  pool  will  be  washed  off. 

ANARAJVYA  (ANARAl^YA) .  A  King  of  the  Iksvaku 
dynasty.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  1,  Verse  236). 
For  genealogy,  see  IKSVAKU.  Anaranya  was  a  vege- 
tarian. (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  115,  Verse  59) . 
Ravana  once  attacked  his  country  whom  he  challenged 
to  a  duel.  In  the  duel  Anaranya  died.  Before  dying  he 
cursed  Ravana  that  he  would  be  killed  by  Rama,  son 
of  King  Dasaratha.  (Brahmanda  Purana,  Chapter  45) . 

ANARANYA.     (See  ANARAftYA) . 

ANARKA(M) .  A  king  born  in  King  Kaipla's  dynasty. 
(Agni  Purana,  Chapter  2 78). 

ANASA  (ASAMGA) .  A  brother  of  Akrura.  (Bhagavata, 
Dasama  Skandha) . 

ANAStJYA.  Wife  ofSageAtri,  son  of  Brahma.  (Visnu 
Purana,  Part  1,  Chapter  10). 

1)  Genealogy.     From   Mahavisnu  were    born    in    order 
Brahma,  Svayambhuva  Manu,  Devahuti,  Anasuya.    To 
Svayambhuva,   son  of  Brahma,  was    born    by  his  wife 
Satarupa  five  children  :  Uttanapada,  Priyavrata,  Ahuti. 
Devahuti   and  Prasuti    and    Devahuti   was  married   to 
Kardama,    son  of  Brahma.    They  begot  two  daughters, 
Kala.   and  Anasuya.    Marici   married   Kala    and    Atri 
married  Anasuya.  (Bhagavata,  Skandha  1,  Chapter  4). 

2)  The  Tapassakti  of  Anasuya.     Once  upon  a  time,  rains 
having  failed  for  ten  years  the  whole  world  sweated  in 
agony  and  river  Gangl  got  dried  up.  Famine  stalked  the 
world.  In  this  dire  contingency  it  was    the  tapassakti  of 
Anasuya  that  made  trees  bear  fruits  and  Ganga  to  flow 
again.  Also,  she  converted  ten  days  into  nights  on    the 
request  of  the  Devas. 

During  their  forest  life  Rama  and  Slta  reached  the  her- 
mitage of  sage  Atri,  and  the  sage  and  Anasuya  treated 
the  guests  sumptuously.  The  above  story  about  the 
tapassakti  of  Anasuya  was  told  then  by  Atri.  The  story 
helped  to  increase  Rama's  respect  for  Anasuya.  Anasuya 
gave  Slta  all  proper  advice.  She  taught  Slta  that  abso- 
lute service  to  husband  is  the  greatest  tapas  ordained 
to  women.  Anasuya  gave  to  Slta  a  very  sacred  garland 
and  a  sublime  gem.  And,  after  that  Rama  and  Slta  left 
the  hermitage.  (Valmiki  Ramayana,  Ayodhyakanda, 
Cantos  117  and  118.). 

3)  Sons   of   Anasuya.     She  had  three  sons:  Datt'treya, 
Durvasas  and  Candra.  (Visnu  Purana,  Part  1,   Chapter 
10) .  (The  reason  for  Mahavisnu  being  born   as  Datr.t- 
reya,    Siva   as    Durvasas  and    Brahma    as    Candra    to 
Anasuya  is  given  under  Atri) . 

ANAUPAMYA.  Wife  of  Banasura.  Once  she  developed 
an  amorous  interest  in  Narada.  which  led  to  some 
domestic  quarrels.  (Padma  Purana,  Adikfinda,  Chapter 

ANAVADYA.  Wife  of  KaSyapa,  this  Apsar"  woman 
participated  in  the  birthday  celebrations  of  Arjuna. 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  122,  Verse  62). 

AI^DA.*  Suta,  the  disciple  of  Vyasa  said  to  the  Munis 
at  the  Naimisaranya  about  the  creation  of  the  Universe: 
In  the  beginning  in  the  heavy  universal  darkness,  the 

^DA.     The  primal  seed  (Anda=egg  or  seed)    from  which  everything  was  born. 


first  seed  of  life  (anda)   appeared.   (M.B.,   Adi   Parva, 
Chapter  1,  Verse  28). 

.  \\DAKATAHA.  The  entire  universe  consisting  of  the 
fourteen  worlds,  which  are  :  Bhuloka,  Bhuvarloka, 
Svarloka,  Maharloka,  Janarloka,  Tapoloka,  Satyaloka, 
Patfila,  Rasatala,  Mahatala,  Talatala,  Sutala,  Vitala, 

ANDHA  I.  An  offspring  of  Kasyapa  by  his  wife 
Kadrii.  (M.B.,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  103,  Verse  16). 
ANDHA  II.  There  is  a  story  in  M.B.,  about  a  hunts- 
man, Vataka  killing  one  Andha,  an  evil  being.  Andha 
whose  form  and  shape  were  that  of  an  animal,  by  do- 
ing tapas,  became  recipient  of  a  boon  for  destroying 
everything.  Brahma  rendered  him  blind  lest  the  world 
perish,  and  that  a'nimal  began  to  be  known  as  Andha. 
When  Andha  began  his  programme  of  complete  destruc- 
tion many  people  rushed  up  to  ViiSvamitra  in  his  abode 
in  the  forest.  Andha  followed  them.  But,  Visvamitra, 
in  the  interests  of  self-protection  pointed  out  the  refu- 
gees to  Andha.  As  punishment  for  this  sin  Visvamitra 
had  once  to  go  to  hell.  This  story  was  related  by 
Krsna  to  Arjuna  during  the  great  war  at  Kuruksetra, 
and  the  reason  for  telling  the  story  was  this:  During 
the  fight  Arjuna  hesitated  to  aim'  arrows  against  Karna. 
Enraged  by  this  attitude  of  Arjuna  Dharmaputra  asked 
him  to  hand  over  his  famous  bow,  Gandiva  to  Sri  Krsna. 
Feeling  insulted  at  this  demand  Arjuna,  all  on  a  sud- 
den, drew  his  sword  to  do  away  with  Dharmaputra. 
Sri  Krsna,  prevented  Arjuna  from  attacking  his  noble 
brother,  and  in  this  context  related  the  above  story  to 
prove  the  truth  that  sins  committed  even  unwittingly 
will  lead  one,  as  in  the  case  of  Visvamitra  to  hell. 
( M.B.,  Kama  Parva,  Chapter  69) . 

ANDHA  III.  Upamanyu,  the  excellent  disciple  of 
Dhaumya,  consumed  the  leaves  of  a  tree  which  made 
him  blind.  (See  Ayodhadhaumya)  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  3) . 

ANDHAKA  I.     There  was  a  very  renowned  king  called 
Andhaka    in  the  Yadu  dynasty.  All  kings  belonging  to 
this  dynasty  used  to  be  called  Andhakas. 
ANDHAKA  II.     Verse  12,  Chapter  4  of  M.B.,  Udyoga 
Parva   refers    to   another    King  called  Andhaka.    The 
Pandavas  had  sent  to  him  a  messenger  soliciting  mili- 
tary help. 
ANDHAKA  III.     An  Asura. 

1 )  Birth.  This  Asura  was  the  foster  son  of  Hiranyaksa. 
Siva  was  really  his  father.  While  once  Siva  was 
immersed  in  yoga  his  daughter  closed  his  eyes  play- 
fully with  her  hands,  and  lo  !  a  darkness  rose  and 
enveloped  the  whole  place.  From  that  darkness,  with 
a  sound  as  that  of  thunderbolt,  appeared  a  Raksasa. 
He  got  the  name  Andhaka  as  he  was  born  from  dark- 
ness. At  that  time  Hiranyaksa  was  doing  tapas  for  a 
son.  Siva  appeared  before  him  and  bestowing  on  him 
Andhaka  as  a  foster  son  said  as  follows:  "If  he 
(Andhaka)  earns  the  hatred  of  the  world  or  desires 
even  the  mother  of  the  three  worlds  or  kills  brahmins 
I  will  myself  burn  him  to  ashes".  After  saying  this 
Siva  disappeared.  (Vamana  Purana,  Chapter  63). 
2 )  Andhaka  desires  Pdrvati  with  lust.  One  day  overcome 
by  erotic  passion  Andhaka  said  to  his  henchmen  as 
follows  :  "He  is  my  true  friend  who  brings  Siva's 
consort,  Parvati  to  me.  Yes,  he  is  my  brother,  nay, 
father  even."  Hearing  these  ravings  •..  of -,  Andhaka, 
Prahlada  went  to  him  and  convinced  him  that  Parvati, 



in  fact  was  his  mother.  But  Andhaka  was  not  quieten- 
ed. Then  Prahlada  explained  to  him  the  gravity  of 
the  sin  of  desiring  other  people's  wives.  Even  this  had 
no  effect  on  Andhaka.  He  sent  Sambarasura  to  Siva 
to  ask  for  and  bring  Parvati  to  him.  Siva  sent  word  to 
Andhaka  that  if  the  latter  would  defeat  him  in  the 
game  of  dice  Parvati  would  be  sent  to  him.  Andhaka 
got  enraged  and  rushed  to  mount  Mandara  and  began 
a  fight  with  Siva. 

3)  Death.  Defeated  in  the  encounter,  Andhaka  craved 
for  Siva's  pardon.  He  admitted  that  Parvati  was  his 
mother.  He  also  prayed  for  Siva's  blessings  for  removal 
of  his  Asurahood.  Siva  granted  him  the  prayers.  The 
sins  and  Asurahood  of  Andhaka  were  thus  ended.  Siva 
made  him  the  head  of  the  Asuras,  named  Bhrngi. 
(Vamana  Purana,  Chapter  63  etc.). 

ANDHAKA  (M).  A  sacred  pool.  A  dip  in  this  pool  will 
bring  all  the  benefits  of  a    Purusamedha    yajna.  (M.B., 
Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  25,  Verses  32,  33) . 
ANDHAKARAKA  (M ) .  A  place  in  the  island  of  Kraunca. 

(M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  12,  Verse  18) . 
ANDHAKARAM.  A  mountain  in  the  island  of  Kraunca. 

(M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  12,  Verse  22). 
ANDHAKUPA  (M).  In  the  Devi  Bhagavata  Mahavisnu 
describes  28  hells  to  Narada,  and  Andhakupam  is  one 
of  them,  (see  Naraka).  Andhakupa  is  reserved  for  those 
who  kill  either  Brahmins  or  devotees  of  God  or  Sannya- 
sins  (holy  people).  This  hell  abounds  in  cruel  beasts 
like  the  bear  and  leopard,  evil  birds  like  the  eagle, 
reptiles  like  the  snake  and  scorpion  and  dirty  insects 
like  bugs  and  mosquitos.  The  sinner  will  have  to  put 
up  with  all  these  sufferings  in  hell  till  the  period  of  his 
punishment  expires.  (Devi  Bhagavata,  Astama 

ANDHATAMISRA.  One  of  the  28  hells.  (See  Naraka). 
This  hell  is  destined  for  wives  who  cheat  their  husbands 
and  consume  food  and  for  husbands  who  cheat  their 
wives  and  eat  food.  Agents  of  Yama  get  hold  of 
such  sinners  and  push  them  into  the  Andhatamisra.  As 
the  cords  of  the  agents  with  which  they  bind  the  sin- 
ners get  tighter  around  their  bodies  they  faint  and  fall 
down  owing  to  unbearable  pain.  When  they  regain 
consciousness  and  try  to  run  away  and  escape,  the 
Agents  of  Yama  again  bind  them  with  the  cord.  (Devi 
Bhagavata,  Astama  Skandha). 

ANDHRA  (ANDHRA) .  This  is  the  Andhra  Pradesh  in 
modern  India.  It  has  to  be  surmised  that  this  place  was 
very  famous  during  the  period  of  the  composition  of  the 
Mahabharata.  (M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse 
ANDHRA.  Warriors  from  Andhra  were  called  Andhras. 

(M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  8). 
ANDHRAKA  I.     Verse  24,  Chapter  4  of  Sabha  Parva, 
describes  this  king  of  Andhra  Desa  as  having  sat  in  the 
assembly  hall  of  the   palace   constructed  by  Maya  at 
Indraprastha  for  the  Pandavas.  He  was  also  present  at 
the  Rajasuya  Yajna  performed  by    Yudhisfhira.   (M.B., 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  34,  Verse  11 ). 
ANDHRAKA  II.     The  warriors  of  Andhra    Desa   were 
called  Andhrakas   also.   (M.B.,  Karna  Parva,  Chapter 
20,  Verses  10  and  1 1) .  In  the  Bharata  war  the  King  of 
Pandya  defeated  those  warriors.  Krsna  incited  Arjuna 
to  kill  the  Andhras  and  the  Pulindas.     (M.B.,  Karna 
Parva,  Chapter  73,  Verses  19  to  21) . 
ANDHRAKA  III.     Andhrakas  are  classed    with  Mlec- 




chas  (lowest  caste  of  people)  in  Verse  42,  Chapter  207 
of  Santi  Parva. 

ANENAS  I.     A   king    of    the    Lunar  dynasty    (Candra 
Varhsa) . 

1)  Genealogy.     Descended  from  Visnu  in  the  following 
order:  Brahma  -  Atri  -  Candra  -'fiudha-  Pururavas- 

2)  Birth.     Puriiravas  had  by  his  wife  Urvasi  six  sons 
named   Ayus,    Srutayus,    Satyayus,  Raya,  Vijaya   and 
Jaya.  Of  them,  Ayus,  the  eldest,  had  five  sons  named 
Nahusa,    Ksatravrddha,    Raji,   Rambha  and  Anenas. 
Nahusa  had  a  son  named  Yayati  to  whom  were  born 
the  sons  Puru,  Yadu  and  others.  The  two  dynasties  of 
Yadu  and  Puru  (Yaduvamsa  and    Puruvarhsa)    origi- 
nate from  them.  To  Anenas    brother  of  Nahusa,  a  son 
named  Suddha  was  born.  Suddha  begot  Suci  who  be- 
got Trikakup  and  a  son  named  Santarayas  was  born  to 

ANENAS  II.     A  Maharaja  of  the  Iksvaku  dynasty. 
Genealogy.     From    Visnu    descended     thus:    Kasyapa- 
Vaivasvata  Manu  -  Iksvaku-Sasada-Kakutstha-Anenas. 

ANGA.     A  King  belonging  to  the  Candra  varhsa.  (Lunar 
dynasty) . 

1)  Genealogy.  Descended  from  Visnu  in  the  following 
order:  Brahma  -  Atri  -  Candra-Budha-Pururavas-Ayus- 
Nahusa  -  Yayati  -  Anudruhyu  -  Sabhanara  -  Kalanara- 

2)  Birth.     Ariga,   Kaliriga,    Suhma,    Kandra,   Vanga, 
Adrupa  and  Anasabhu  are  the  seven  sons  born  to  Bali, 
the  son  of  Sutapas,  by  his  wife  Sutesna,  and  the  King 
Atiga  is  one  of  them.  There  is  a  story  about  the  birth 
of  these  sons. 

Once  there  lived  a  hermit  named  Utatthya.  He  was 
the  elder  brother  ofBrhaspati.  One  day  when  Mamata, 
Utatthya 's  wife,  was  pregnant,  Brhaspati  approached 
her  with  carnal  desires.  In  spite  of  her  efforts  to  dis- 
suade her  brother-in-law  from  his  attempts  she  could  not 
prevail  upon  him.  He  forced  her  and  satisfied  his  desire. 
The  child  in  her  womb  protested  and  kicked  the  sperm 
ofBrhaspati  out  into  the  floor.  Brhaspati  got  angry  and 
cursed  the  child  in  the  womb:  "May  you  fall  in  perpe- 
tual darkness".  So  the  child  was  born  blind  and 
remained  blind  throughout  his  life.  Hence  he  got  the 
name  'Dirghatamas'.  Dirghatamas  married  Pradvesi.  A 
son  named  Gautama  was  born  to  them.  The  duty  of 
supporting  Dirghatamas  fell  upon  the  wife  and  the  son, 
who  put  him  on  a  raft  and  pushed  him  astray  into  the 
River  Ganges.  King  Bali,  who  was  bathing  in  the  river 
saw  this.  He  rescued  the  hermit  and  took  him  to  the 
palace  and  pleasing  him  by  hospitality,  requested  him 
to  beget  children  in  his  wife  Sutesna,  who  detesting  the 
idea  sent  a  Sudra  woman  Dhatreyi  in  her  stead  and 
eleven  children  were  born  to  them.  By  and  by  Dirgha- 
tamas came  to  know  of  the  deceit  played  by  Sutesna  on 
him  and  he  became  very  angry.  But  the  King  pacified 
him  and  pleased  him  again  and  Dirghatamas  begot  five 
sons  by  Sutesna.  They  were  Aiiga,  Vanga,  Kaliiiga, 
Paundra  and  Suhma.  Dirghatamas  blessed  them  that  they 
would  become  very  famous.  Anga,  Vanga,  Kalinga, 
Paundra  and  Suhma  were  the  five  kingdoms  ruled  by 
Aiiga,  Vanga,  Kalinga,  Paundra  and  Suhma  respectively. 
These  five  are  the  famous  Kings  of  the  Bali  family. 
(Mahabharata,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  104). 

3)  How    Aiiga   got  children.     Once  Anga   performed  a 
horse  sacrifice.    But  the  gods  did  not  appear  to  receive 

oblations.  Holy  seers  said  that  the  Gods  refused  to 
accept  the  oblations  offered  by  the  King  because  he  was 
childless.  So  he  performed  the  sacrifice  called  Putraka- 
mesti  (Sacrifice  to  get  a  son)  and  from  the  sacrificial 
fire  arose  a  divine  person  with  a  golden  flask  of  pud- 
ding, which  he  offered  to  the  King  and  his  queen.  The 
King  and  the  queen  Sunitha  ate  the  pudding,  as  a 
result  of  which  a  son  was  born  to  them.  He  was  named 
Vena.  This  son  was  wicked.  Because  of  his  wickedness 
the  King  became  so  miserable  that  he  left  his  kingdom 
and  went  on  a  pilgrimage.  Since  there  was  no  other 
means  the  people  enthroned  Vena,  who  tortured  his 
subjects  beyond  limit.  (Bhagavata,  4th  Skandha,  Chap- 
ters Band  14). 
ANGADA  I.  A  son  of  Bali. 

1)  Genealogy.     Descended   from  Visnu  in    the  following 
order  :  Brahma-Kasyapa-Indra-Bali-Arigada. 

2)  Birth.     Aiigada  was    the   son   of  Bali    ( the  son  of 
Indra)  born  of  his  wife  Tara.    (Mahabharata,    Vana 
Parva,  Chapter  82,  Stanza  28). 

a)  Aiigada    was  a  member  of  the  group  of  monkeys 
sent  by  Sugrlva  to  find  out  Sita.  (Valmlki  Ramayana, 
Aranyakanda ) . 

b)  He   was  the  foremost  among  the  group  of  monkeys 
who   entered    Madhuvana   and  ate  the  berries   in  the 
garden,  on  their  return  after  the  search  for  Sita. 

-c)      Angada   was   sent  to   the  court  of  Ravana    as    a 
messenger  by  Sri  Rama.    (Ramayana,  Yuddhakanda) . 

d)  In    the  battle  between  Rama  and  Ravana  Angada 
combated  with  Indrajit.  (Ramayana,  Yuddhakanda). 

e)  After    his  combat  with  Indrajit,    Angada  and  his 
followers  led  an  attack  on  the  army  of  Ravana.    (Rama- 
yana, Yuddhakanda). 

f)  After   the  battle,  Sri  Rama  anointed   Angada  as  the 
heir-apparent  to  the  Kingdom  of  Kiskindha.  The  neck- 
lace which   Bali  had  given  on  his  death  to  Sugrlva,  was 
returned  to  Angada.  (Uttara  Ramayana) . 

g)  Sri    Rama  returned  to    Ayodhya    after  his  forest 
life  and  celebrated   a    horse  sacrifice.    The   sacrificial 
horse  was  caught  and  detained  by  King  Suratha.  Com- 
ing to  know  of  this   Satrughna  sent   Angada    to    deal 
with    Suratha,    who    said  that  the  horse  was  detained 
with  the  intention  of  meeting  with  Sri  Rama  personally. 
Angada  returned  and  told  Satrughna  what  Suratha  had 
said  to  him.  (Padma  Purana,  Khanda) . 

ANGADA  II.  There  was  a  prince  called  Angada  among 
the  mighty  men-of-arms  on  the  side  of  the  Kauravas. 
He  got  into  action  on  the  battle-field  on  the  twelfth  day 
of  the  battle.  (M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  25,  Stanza 

ANGADA  HI.  Srutakirti  the  wedded  wife  of  Satru- 
ghna, brother  of  Sri  Rama,  had  two  sons  called  Aiigada 
and  Chandraketu.  (Uttara  Ramayana). 

ANGADA  IV.  In  the  Bhagavata  we  see  another  Angada 
who  was  the  son  of  Gada,  the  brother  of  Krsna  by  his 
wife,  Brhatl. 

ANGAKARMA.  Actions  on  the  stage  are  of  two  kinds. 
One  is  to  express  by  the  major  organs  of  the  body.  The 
other  is  to  express  by  the  minor  organs  of  the  body.  Head 
etc.  are  major  organs  and  eyebrow  etc.  are  minor 
organs.  Actions  expressed  by  major  organs  are  called 
Aiigakarma  and  those  by  minor  organs  are  called  Prat- 
yaiiga  Karma.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  341). 

ANGALAMMA.     She  is  the  wife  of  Virabhadra,  a  servant 

ANGA(M)  38 

of  Siva.  She  has  a  rope  in  her  left  hand,  with  which  she 
hauls  up  the  spirits  of  the  dead. 

ANGA(M).     The   kingdom  ruled  by  King  Ahga.  Other 

1 )  The  Dynasty.     The  first  King  of  the   Ariga   dynasty 
was    Anga    the    son    of  Bali.    Anagabhu,    Draviratha, 
Dharmaratha,     Romapada     (LomapTida)  ,    Caturahga, 
Prthulaksa,     Brhadratha,      Brhanmanas,      Jayadratha, 
Vijaya,    Drdhavrata,     Satyakarma,     Atiratha,     Karna, 
Vrsasena  and  others  were  kings  of  this  dynasty.   Karna 
was  the  adopted  son  of  Atiratha.  During  the  period  of 
the  Mahabharata,    Kings  of  the  Atiratha  family  were 
under  the  sway  of  the  Candra  varhsa  (Lunar  dynasty) 
kings  such    as  Dhrtarastra  and  Pandu.  (For  further  in- 
formations see  the  word  Atiratha) . 

2)  How  Kama    became  the  king   of  Anga.    A   contest   in 
archery    and    the  wielding  of  other  weapons   was  going 
on  in  Hastinapura,  the  competitors  being  the  Kauravas 
and  the  Pandavas.    The  status  of  Karna,  who  appeared 
on  the  side  of   the  Kauravas,   was   questioned    by    the 
Pandavas  on  the  occasion  and  Duryodhana,  who  always 
stood  on  his  dignity,  anointed  Karna    as   the   King    of 
Anga,  on  the  spot.   (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  136) . 

3)  Drought   in  the  kingdom  of  Ariga.  Lomapada  ( Roma- 
pada) the  king  of  Ahga  once  deceived  a  hermit  Brahmin. 
So  all  the  Brahmins  quitted  the  country   and   thereafter 
there  was  no  rainfall  in  the  country    for   several  years. 
The  sages  of  the  country  began  to  think  on   the   means 
of  bringing  about  rain.    One  day  they  approached  the 
King  and  told  him  that  the  only  way    to   get  rain   was 
to  bring  the  great  hermit  Rsyasrhga  to  the  country. 
Once  Kasyapa  happened    to    see    Urvasi   and   he    had 
seminal  flow.     The  sperm  fell  in  a  river.    A  deer    swal- 
lowed it  along  with  the  water  it  drank.  It  gave  birth  to  a 
human  child  with  horns  on   the    head.  This    child  was 
called   Rsyasrhga.     It    was   brought    up   by    a   hermit 
called  Vibhandaka   in  his  hut.     Rsyasriiga   had  never 
seen-  women    and  by  virtue  of  this,  there  occurred  rain- 
fall wherever  he  went.    The  King  Lomapada  sent    some 
courtesans    to    the    forest   to   attract     Rsyasrhga,    who 
following    them    arrived   at  the  court  of  Lomapada  the 
King  of  Anga  and  the  King  gave  Rsyasrhga,  as   a   gift, 
his    daughter  Santa.    Thus  the  country  got  rain.    This 
Lomapada  was   a  friend  of  Dasaratha.   (Mahabharata, 
Aranya  Parva,  Chapters  110  to  113). 

4)  How  the  Kingdom  got  the   name   Ariga.  One   opinion   is 
that    the   Kingdom    got   its   name  from  the  King  Ahga 
who  ruled  over  it.  Another  opinion  is  that   the  king  got 
his  name  from  the  country  he  ruled.  However    there  is 
a    story    revealing    how    the  country  came  to  be  called 

In  the  realm  of  God,  preliminary  steps  were  being  taken 
for  making  Sri  Paramesvara  wed  Parvati.  According  to 
the  instructions  of  Devendra,  Kamadeva  (the  Lord  of 
Love — Cupid)  was  trying  to  break  the  meditation  of  Siva 
and  when  Siva  opened  his  third  eye,  fire  emitted  from 
it  and  Anahga  (Kamadeva)  was  burned  to  ashes.  It 
was  in  the  country  of  Ahga  that  the  ashes  of  the  'ahga' 
(Body)  of  Kamadeva  fell  and  from  that  day  onwards 
the  country  came  to  be  called  Ahga  and  Kamadeva, 
'Anahga'  (without  body).  (Valmiki  Ramayana,  Bala- 
kanda,  Sarga  26) . 

5)  Other  informations. 

( 1 )  It  is  mentioned  in  the  Hindi  Dictionary,  'Sabda 
Sagara'  that  the  kingdom  of  Ahga  embracing  Bhagatpur 


and  Murhger  in  Bihar  had  its  capital  at  Campapurl  and 
that  the  country  had  often  stretched  from  Vaidya- 
nathan'irna  to  Bhuvanesvar. 

(2)  Arjuna  had  visited  the  Kingdom  of  Ahga  also  during 
his  pilgrimage.   (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  219,    Stanza 

(3)  The  King  of  Ahga  was  present  at  the  sacrifice  of 
Rajasuya  (Royal  consecration)  celebrated  by  Dharma- 
putra,  when  the  Pandavas  were  living  at  Indraprastha. 

(M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  52,  Stanza  16) . 

(4)  On  one  occasion  Sri  Krsna  defeated  the  Ahgas  in  a 
battle.   (M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  11,  Stanza  15). 

(5)  Parasurama  had  defeated    the  Ahgas  once.  (M.B., 
Drona  Parva,  Chapter  7,  Stanza  12). 

(6)  In    the  battle  of  Kuruksetra  between  the  Pandavas 
and  the  Kauravas,  on  the  sixteenth  day    of  the    battle, 
the  heroes  of  Ahga  made  an  onslaught  on  Arjuna.  (M.B., 
Karna  Parva,  Chapter  17,  Stanza  12). 

( 7)  The  Ahgas  attacked   the   armies    of  Dhrstadyumna 
and  the  King  of  Pancala.   (M.B.,  Karna  Parva,  Chapter 
22,  Stanza  2) . 

(8)  A  low  caste  man  from  Ahga   attacked  Bhlma,  who 
killed  the  man  and  his  elephant.  (Mahabharata,  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  26,  Stanzas  14  to  17). 


General  Information.  (I)  This  was  a  country  in  ancient 
Bharata.  (Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Stanza  50). 
(2)  Visvamitra  had  taken  to  the  forest  from  Ayodhya 
Rama  and  Laksmana  to  protect  the  hermits  and  their 
yagas.  On  the  way  they  entered  the  Tafaka  forest. 
Visvamitra  told  the  boys  in  answer  to  their  questions 
thus  :  ''In  olden  days  this  place  was  a  countryside 
known  as  Ahgamalaja  or  Malada  or  Karusa.  There  is 
a  reason  for  calling  the  country  by  that  name.  Indra 
killed  Vrtra  and  thereby  incurred  the  sin  of  Brahma- 
hatya  and  so  he  came  away  to  this  country  and  lived 
here  for  a  while.  The  Gods  found  him  out  here.  They 
poured  water  on  the  head  of  the  unclean  Indra  and  the 
dirt,  hunger,  excreta  and  Karusa  having  been  separated 
from  his  body  fell  on  the  soil  of  this  place  and  was 
mingled  with  it.  Indra's  body  became  pure.  As  excreta, 
Karusa  etc.  were  mingled  with  the  soil  of  this  country, 
it  came  to  be  called  Ahgamalaja,  Malada  or  Karusa 
from  that  day  onwards.  One  part  of  the  country  was 
called  Malada  and  the  other  part  Karusa.  Indra,  having 
been  purified  by  washing  in  water  returned  to  heaven 
with  the  gods.  After  that  this  country  became  uninha- 
bited for  a  long  time.  The  horrible  Tataka  lives  in  this 
forest  now".  (Valmiki  Ramayana,  Balakanda,  Sarga 

ANGAPRADAKSINA.  Rolling  behind  a  chariot  round 
the  temple  as  a  vow. 

ANGARA.  A  king  of  ancient  India.  He  was  defeated  by 
Mandhata  in  a  battle.  (Mahabharata,  Santi  Parva, 
Chapter  29,  Stanza  88). 

KINGS) .  Descended  from  Visnu  in  the  following  order: 
Brahma  -  Atri-Candra-Budha-Pururavas-Ayus  -  Nahusa- 
Yayati.  Yadu,  Turvasu,  Druhyu  and  Anudruhyu  were 
the  four  sons  of  Yayati.  The  Ahga  dynasty  starts  from 
Turvasu,  one  of  the  four.  The  following  are  the  descen- 
dants of  Turvasu.  Varga  was  the  son  of  Turvasu, 
Gobhanu,  the  son  of  Varga,  Traisani  the  son  of  Gobhanu, 
Karandhama,  the  son  of  Traisani,  Marutta,  the  son  of 
Karandhama,  Dusyanta,  the  son  of  Marutta,  Varutha, 




the  son  of  Dusyanta,  Gandira  the  son  of  Varutha,  and 
Gandara  the  son  of  Gandira.  The  five  powerful  peoples, 
the  Gandharas,  the  Colas,  the  Keralas,  the  Pandyas 
and  the  Kolas  have  descended  from  Gandhara. 
Two  sons,  Druhyu  and  Babhrusetu  were  born  to  Gandhara. 
Babhrusetu  begot  Purovasu;  Purovasu  begot  Gandhari. 
From  Gandhari  Gharma  was  born,  from  Gharma  Ghrta 
was  born,  from  Ghrta  Vidusa  was  born,  and  fromVidusa 
Pracetas  was  born.  Pracetas  got  a  hundred  children  of 
whom  the  prominent  were  Anidra,  Sabhanara,  Caksusa  and 
Paramesu.  To  Sabhanara  was  born  Kalanala  and  Srn- 
jaya  to  Kalanala,  Puranjaya  to  Srnjayaandjanamejaya 
to  Puranjaya.  Mahasala  was  the  son  of  Janamejaya; 
Mahamanas  the  son  of  Mahasala,  and  Usinara  the  son 
of  Mahamanas.  To  Usinara  were  born  Nrga,  Nara, 
Krmi,  Suvrata  and  Sibi  by  his  wives  Nrga,  Nara,  Krmi, 
Dasa  and  Drsadvati  respectively.  To  Sibi  were  born 
four  sons  called  Prthudarbha,  Viraka,  Kaikaya  and 
Bhadraka.  Four  separate  kingdoms  arose  in  the  names 
of  them.  Usinara  had  another  son  called  Titiksu.  From 
Titiksu  was  born  Rusadratha;  from  Rusadratha  was 
born  Paila,  from  Paila  was  born  Sutapas  and  from 
Sutapas  was  born  the  great  hermit  Bali.  From  Bali, 
Ariga,  Variga,  Kaliiiga,  Pundra,  Baleya  and  Balayogi 
were  born.  To  Ariga  was  born  Dadhivahana.  The  King 
Draviratha  was  the  son  of  Dadhivahana,  Dharmaratha 
the  son  of  Draviratha,  Citraratha  the  son  of  Dharma- 
ratha, and  Satyaratha  was  the  son  of  Citraratha.  To 
Satyaratha  was  born  Lomapada;  to  Lomapada  was 
born  Caturariga;  to  Caturariga  was  born  Prthulaksa,  to 
Prthulaksa  was  born  Campa;  to  Campa  was  born  Har- 
yariga,  to  Haryanga  was  born  Bhadraratha,  to  Bhadra- 
ratha  was  born  Brhatkarma,  to  Brhatkarma  was  born 
Brhadbhanu,  to  Brhadbhanu  was  born  Brhadatma, 
to  Brhadatma  was  born  Jayadratha,  to  Jayadratha  was 
born  Brhadratha  and  to  Brhadratha  was  born  Visvajit. 
After  that  Kama  became  the  King  of  Ariga.  The  son  of 
Kama  was  Vj-sasena  and  the  son  of  Vrsasena  was 
Prthusena.  These  are  the  kings  of  the  Ariga  dynasty. 
(Agni  Purana,  Chapter  277.) 

ANGARAKA  I.  An  Asura  who  took  the  form  of  a  pig. 
The  story  of  how  this  Asura  was  killed  by  his  daughter 
Arigaravati,  is  given  below. 

Long  ago  there  was  an  emperor  named  Mahendra- 
varma  in  Ujjayinl.  His  son  Mahasena  did  penance  for 
a  long  time  to  get  a  wife  and  a  sword.  At  last  Devi 
appeared  and  granted  the  boon:  ''My  son  !  take  this 
extraordinary  sword.  So  long  as  you  have  this  sword, 
your  enemies  will  not  prevail  against  you.  Arigaravati, 
the  renowned  beauty  of  the  three  worlds,  who  is  the 
daughter  of  the  Asura  Arigaraka,  will  become  your 
wife  in  due  course.  As  you  do  horrible  deeds,  you  will 
be  called  Candamahasena".  He  was  given  the  sword 
and  a  tusker  called  Nadagiri.  One  day  Mahasena  went 
to  the  forest  for  hunting.  He  saw  a  very  large  pig.  The 
King  used  his  arrows.  But  they  did  little  harm  to  the 
pig.  Moreover  it  turned  the  chariot  of  the  King  over 
to  one  side  and  ran  to  a  cave.  The  King  followed  it 
with  fury.  On  the  way  he  sat  on  the  bank  of  a  lake 
with  wonder,  for  a  lady  of  exquisite  beauty  was  walk- 
ing along  the  mossy  turf  in  the  midst  of  some  maids. 
Slowly  she  approached  the  King  and  talked  with  him. 
The  young  lady  had  entirely  captured  the  heart  of  the 
King,  who  told  her  everything.  She  began  to  weep. 
"Who  are  you?  Why  do  you  weep?"  The  King  asked 

her.  She  replied  with  a  deep  sigh.  "The  pig  you  saw, 
is  my  father  Arigarakasura.  His  body  is  as  hard  as 
diamond  and  not  vulnerable  to  any  sort  of  weapon. 
These  maids  have  been  caught  by  him  from  various 
royal  houses  and  brought  here  for  my  help.  My  name 
is  Arigaravati.  My  father  was  changed  to  a  giant  by  a 
curse.  Now  he  is  asleep  discarding  the  form  of  pig. 
When  he  wakes  up,  filled  with  hunger  and  thirst,  he 
will  do  you  harm.  My  tears  flowed  out  in  the  form  of 
heated  life-breaths,  when  I  thought  of  these  things." 
The  King  said,  "Go  and  sit  by  him  and  cry  when  he 
wakes  up.  He  will  ask  the  reason.  Then  tell  him  that 
you  had  been  crying,  when  you  thought  how  forlorn 
you  would  be  without  a  mate,  in  case  your  father  was 
killed  by  somebody".  Arigaravati  did  as  she  was  told. 
Hearing  her  words  Arigaraka  said,  "My  daughter  !  No 
body  can  kill  me.  My  body  is  made  of  diamond.  There 
is  only  one  vulnerable  point  in  my  body  which  is  on 
my  left  forearm  and  it  is  always  covered  with  my 

The  king  hid  himself  closely  and  heard  everything.  He 
fought  with  the  Asura  and  hitting  at  the  vulnerable 
point  killed  him.  The  king  married  Arigaravati  and 
took  her  to  his  palace.  Two  sons  were  born  to  him. 
They  were  called  Gopalaka  and  Palaka.  By  the  grace 
of  Indra  a  daughter  also  was  born  to  him  by  her  and 
she  was  Vasavadatta,  the  wife  of  the  famous  Udayana. 
(Kathasaritsagara,  Kathamukhalambaka,  Tarariga  3) . 

ANGARAKA  II.  A  prince  named  Arigaraka  is  seen  to 
have  been  the  descendant  of  Jayadratha,  the  King  of 
Sauvlra.  (Mahabharata,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  265, 
Stanza  10). 

ANGARAKA  III.  A  planet  named  Marigala  which  is  a 
satellite  of  Brahma  is  seen  to  have  been  called  by  the 
name  Arigaraka  also.  (Mahabharata,  Sabha  Parva, 
Chapter  11,  Stanza  29). 

ANGARAKA  IV.  We  see  one  Arigaraka  among  the  one 
hundred  and  eight  sons  of  the  Sun.  (Mahabharata, 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  3,  Stanza  10) . 


1)  Genealogy.     Descended  in  the  following  order    from 
Visnu.  Brahma-Marlci-Ka^yapa-Arigaraka. 

2)  Birth.     In  the  battle   between    the   Gods   and    the 
Asuras,  most  of  the  Asuras  were  killed  and    one  Asura 
fled    from    the   clutches  of  death  to  Patala  (the  nether 
world).  Surasa  was  the  daughter  of  that  Asura.  Kasyapa 
married  Surasa.  To  them  were  born  the  two  daughters, 
Angaraka     (Simhika)    and   Ajamukhl,    and    four  sons, 
called    Surapadma,     Sirhhavaktra,      Tarakasura     and 
Gomukha.  Thus   Simhika  is    the   sister  of  Tarakasura. 
(Skanda  Purana,  Asura  Kanda) . 

Other  details.  This  giantess  Arigaraka  had  a  clash  once, 
with  Hanuman.  Sugrlva  had  sent  a  large  number  of 
monkeys  under  the  leadership  of  Hanuman  to  search 
for  Sita.  He  gave  Hanuman  certain  instructions  regard- 
ing the  route  he  had  to  follow.  Sugrlva  said,  ''There  is 
a  giantess  in  the  middle  of  that  Southern  Sea.  Her 
name  is  Angara.  She  pulls  the  shadow  towards  her  and 
feeds  on  the  object  of  the  shadow." 
From  this  it  is  clear  that  she  was  a  giantess  who  lived 
in  the  sea  between  Larika  and  South  India.  She  knew 
the  art  of  bringing  to  her  side,  anybody  who  passed 
over  the  sea,  by  pulling  at  his  shadow.  When  Hanuman 
jumped  to  Larika  from  the  mountain  of  Mahendra  the 
giantess  attacked  Hanuman.  It  is  seen  that  the  name 




Simhika  also  is  used  for  Arigaraka.  Hanuman  who  was 
subjected  to  the  excessive  attraction  of  Sirhhika,  felt  a 
great  storm  raging  round  him.  Finally  he  found  her  out, 
a  monster  with  such  an  uncouth  face  and  a  mouth  as 
wide  as  the  hole  of  Patala  (the  nether  world).  There 
was  a  terrible  fight  between  Hanuman  and  the  monster, 
in  which  Simhika,  fell  on  the  ground  beaten.  After  the 
fight  Hanuman  resumed  his  journey.  (Valmlki  Rama- 
yana,  Sundarakanda,  Sarga  1,  Stanzas  178  to  186). 
ANGARA  (M).  A  countryside  in  ancient  India.  (Maha- 
bharata, Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Stanza  60). 
ANGARAPARtfA.  (Citraratha)  See  the  word  CITRA- 


ANGAVAHA.     A  king  of  immense  fame,  belonging  to  the 
dynasty  of  Vrsni.  Angavaha  attended^  with  Balabhadra- 
rfima,    the    sacrifice  of  Raj asuya  (Royal    consecration) 
celebrated  by  Yudhisthira.  ( Mahabharata,  Sab  ha  Parva, 
Chapter  34,  Stanza  16). 

1 )  Birth.  He  is  a  hermit  born  from  the  mind  of  Brahma. 
Six  mind-born  sons  (Manasa-Putras)  were  born  to 
Brahma,  known  as  Marlci,  Angiras,  Atri,  Pulastya, 
Pulaha,  and  Kratu.  All  the  six  of  them  became  great 
hermits.  (Mahabharata,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65, 
Stanza  10)  *. 
2)  Important  events. 

(1)  The  failure  of  Angiras.  There  was  a  King  named 
Citraketu  in  the  kingdom  of  Surasena.  Once  Angiras 
reached  his  palace  when  the  King  was  in  a  miserable 
state  as  he  was  childless.  The  King  informed  Angiras  of 
his  sorrow.  He  pacified  the  King  and  said  that  a  son 
would  be  born  to  him.  He  and  his  wife  Krtadyuti  were 
filled  with  joy.  The  other  wives  of  the  King  did  not  like 
this.  They  feared  that  when  a  son  was  born  to  Krta- 
dyuti the  King  might  overlook  them.  To  the  king  a 
son  was  born  of  Krtadyuti  and  the  other  wives  poisoned 
the  child  and  killed  him.  While  the  parents  were  weep- 
ing over  the  dead  child  Angiras  and  Narada  arrived 
there  and  wiped  their  tears.  Angiras  agreed  to  bring  the 
child  back  to  life.  He  instantly  called  the  spirit  of  the 
dead  child  to  him  and  asked  it  to  become  the  son  of 
Citraketu.  The  spirit  replied  that  it  had  a  large  number 
of  parents  in  several  previous  births  and  that  it  was  not 
possible  for  it  to  become  the  son  of  Citraketu,  and  then 
it  vanished.  Angiras  and  Narada  went  on  their  way. 
Citraketu  became  a  devotee  of  Visnu  and  by  the 
curse  of  Parvatl,  was  born  again  as  Vrtrasura.  (Bhaga- 
vata,  Skandha  6,  Chapter  14). 

(2)  How  Angiras  cursed  Sudarsana  and  transmuted  him  to  a 
serpent.  While  Sudarsana,  a  vidyadhara  (a  class  of  semi- 
gods)  was  travelling  lusl fully  with  a  group  of  beautiful 
girls  he  came  across  Aiig'.ras  and  some  other  hermits.  He 
teased  Angiras  calling  him  'durbhaga'  (unlucky)  and 
Angiras  cursed  him  and  changed  him  to  a  big  serpent 
and  he  was  promised  liberation  from  the  curse,  when, 
during  the  dvapara  yuga  (one  of  the  four  ages)  Maha- 
visnu  would  incarnate  as  Sri  Krsna  and  would  tread 
upon  him  and  then  he  would  regain  his  former  form. 
From  that  day  onwards  Sudarsana  lived  on  the  banks 
of  the  river  Kalindi  in  the  form  of  a  serpent.  It  was 

the  time  when  Sri  Krsna  was  having  his  game  of  love 
with  the  Gopa  women.  On  one  night  one  serpent  bit 
Nanda  the  foster  father  of  Sri  Krsna.  The  cowherds 
or  gopas  hit  at  the  snake  with  burned  wood.  But  it  was 
of  no  use.  Sri  Krsna  came  there  and  thrashed  the 
serpent,  which  instantly  took  the  form  of  Sudarsana 
Vidyadhara  and  praising  Sri  Krsna  entered  heaven. 
(Bhagavata,  Skandha  10,  Chapter  34). 

(3)  A/igiras   a  Prajapati.     Brahma  had  created  sixteen 
prajapatis,  for  effecting  the    creation   of   the    universe. 
Angiras  is  one  of  them.  Their  names  are  given  below: 

1 )  Kardama  9 )     Pulastya 

2)  Vikrlta  10)     Angiras 

3)  Sesa  11)     Pracetas 

4)  Samsraya  12)      Pulaha 

5)  Sthanu  13)     Daksa 

6)  Marlci  14)      Vivasvan 

7)  Atri  15)     Arisfanemi 

8)  Kratu  16)     Kasyapa 
(Valmiki  Ramayana,  Aranyakanda,  Sarga  14). 

(4)  The    wives    and    children  of  Angiras.     Angiras  had 
several  wives  such  as  Subha,  Smrti,  Sraddha,  Devasena 
and  Vasudha.     The  names  of   the  sons  of  Angiras  are 
given  below: 

1 )  Brhatkirti  5)      Brhadmantra 

2)  Brhatjyoti  6)     Brhadbhasa 

3)  Brhadbrahma  7)     Brhaspati. 

4)  Brhadmana 

The  names  of  the  eight  daughters  of  Angiras  are  given 
below : 

1 )  Bhanumati  5)      Havismati 

2)  Raga  6)      Mahismati 

3)  Sinlvali  7)     Manama  ti 

4)  Arcismati  8)     Kuhu. 

Besides  these  sons  and  daughters,  other  sons  such  as 
Sudhanva  and  Karttikeya  were  born  to  Angiras  by  his 
other  wives.  (Mahabharata,  Vana  Parva,  five  chapters 
from  218). 

(5)  The  clash   between  Angiras  and  Prahldda.  Duisasana 
stripped    Pancali   of  her   clothes  in  the  Palace  hall,  in 
the  presence  of  the  Pandavas    who  had  been   defeated 
in    the   game    of  dice.    Before    this   Pancali  had  asked 
Duryodhana  one  question,  "Have  you  won  yourself   or 
myself?"  One  husband  was  not  authorised    to  stake  his 
wife  Pancali  who  was  the  wife  of  five  husbands.  Moreover 
according  to  the  Sastras  (sciences)  the    deeds    executed 
by  a  King,  who  was  miserable  due  to  hunting,  drinking, 
playing  dice  and  hankering   after  a  woman,  were    not 
legally    binding.    Hence  how  could  the  Kauravas  own 
Pancali?"  Vidura  said  that  the  witnesses  in  the  hall  had 
to  give  an  impartial  answer  to  this  question,    and    that 
the  punishment  of  falsehood  would  come  upon  the  doer 
himself.  As  an  instance  he  gave  the  following  old  story : 
Virocana  was  the  son  of  Prahlada ;    Sudhanva    the    son 
of  Angiras    and   Virocana  fell    in    love  with  the  same 
woman  once.  There  arose  a   contention    between    these 
two  as  to  who  was  greater.  They  staked  their    lives    on 
the  issue.  Then  both  of  them  together  approached  Prah- 
lada and  requested  him  to  give  a  decision  as    to   which 
of  them  was  the  elder.  Thinking  that  Prahlada  might  side 
with   Virocana    his    son,    Sudhanva  said  to  him,  "Sir, 

*There  is  another  story  about  the  birth  of  Angiras.  At  a  sacrifice  celebrated  by  Rudra,  seminal  flow  occurred  to  Brahma  who 
happened  to  see  some  celestial  maids  and  was  overpowered  by  passionate  feelings.  Brahma  put  the  sperm  in  the  fire.  From  that  fire  appeared 
Angiras  along  with  Marici,  Bhrgu  and  others.  This  deva  (the  shining  one— the  God)  was  called  Angiras  because  his  origin  was  from  Angara 
or  Cinder. 




you  should  not  utter  words  of  falsehood,  nor  should  you 
abstain  from  speaking  the  truth.  If  you  do  so  your  head 
will  be  cut  into  a  hundred  pieces  by  Indra  with  his 
Vajrayudha  (the  weapon  of  thunderbolt)".  Hesitating 
to  take  a  decision,  because  of  the  words  of  Sudhanva, 
Prahlada  went  to  Kaiyapa  to  clear  his  doubts,  and 
asked:  "Lord,  do  you  know  which  are  the  future  worlds 
destined  for  those  who  utter  words  of  falsehood  or  abstain 
from  giving  out  the  truth  ?"  Kasyapa  said,  "On  him,  who 
abstains  from  speaking  truth  knowingly  a  thousand  cords 
of  death  will  fall.  He  who  tells  falsehood  will  have 
to  perform  many  a  deed  of  duty  to  attain  heaven." 
Having  heard  the  words  of  Kasyapa,  Prahlada  said  to 
Virocana,  "Virocana,  Sudhanva  is  greater  than  you. 
Ahgiras  is  greater  than  me.  Likewise  the  mother  of 
Sudhanva  is  nobler  than  your  mother.  So  according  to 
your  bet  you  owe  your  life  to  Sudhanva."  Pleased  at 
the  righteousness  of  Prahlada,  Sudhanva  gave  Virocana 
a  boon  to  live  a  hundred  years  more.  (Mahabharata, 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  63) . 

(6)  How  Angiras  became  the  first  son  of  Agni  (Fire    God). 
Once  Arigiras  was  blazing  out  as  a  furious    being.    All 
the    worlds    were    illuminated    by    that   flame-fire.  As 
Aiigiras  was  performing  the  functions    of  Agni    (fire), 
peoples  of  the  worlds  discarded  Agni,  who  being  sad  at 
the  derision  shown  towards  him  by  the  worlds  went  to 
a   forest   and    hid    himself    there.    The   living   beings 
were  in  trouble  owing  to  lack  of  fire.  When  he  became 
aware   of  this    Ahgiras   went  to  the  forest  and  pacified 
Agni.  From  that  day  onwards    Angiras    agreed    to   be- 
come   the   first   son  of  Agni,  who  resumed  his  duties  as 
usual.   (Mahabharata,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  217) . 

(7)  How    Angiras  got  the  name  Atharvangiras.  After  the 
slaughter   of   Vrtrasura,  Indra  went  to  the  lake  known 
as  Amrtasaras  and  hid  himself  there  in  a  lotus  flower.  At 
this  time  the  Gods  anointed  Nahusa  as  Indra.  Agastya 
cursed  him    and  turned   him    to    a   serpent   and    sent 
him  to  the  earth.  When  Indra  returned  to  heaven  many 
persons  gathered  there  to  greet  him.    Angiras  also   was 
one  among  them  who  did  obeisance  to  Indra.  He  paid 
his  homage  by  reciting  the  hymns  of  Atharvaveda.  Indra 
who  was  greatly  pleased  at  this,  said  to  Aiigiras,  "Here- 
after  you    shall    be  known  as  Atharvangiras".  Angiras 
who  got  this  boon  from  Indra,  returned  with  gratitude. 
(Mahabharata,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  18,    Stanzas    5 
to  7). 

(8)  Angiras  and  Drona.     In  the  battle    of  Kuruksetra, 
between    the   Pandavas   and    the   Kauravas    the  great 
teacher,  Drona  began  to  release  his  divine  darts  towards 
his  enemies  in  all  directions.  Immediately  Ahgiras  with 
many    other    hermits   came    to    Drona  and    told  him, 
"You  have  burned  to  death  innumerable  men  with  your 
Brahmastra  (The  most  powerful    of  all  missiles).  Your 
end  is  very  near.  So  put  your  weapons    down  and  stop 
your  fight."  Drona  seems  to  have  paid    no    heed  at  all 
to  the    advice  of  the  hermits.  He  did  not  stop  fighting 

(9)  The  sermon  of  Angiras  on  the  merits  of  Tirthas   or  holy 
places  (Baths) .     Dharmaputra  once  asked  Bhisma  about 
the  importance  of  holy  ghats  or  tirthas  (Baths) .  Bhisma 
told  Dharmaputra,  what  Augiras  had  once  told  Gautama 
about  the    merits  obtained  by  going   on   pilgrimage    to 
holy  tirthas    or    Baths.  Angiras  had  described  the  holy 
nature  and  character  of  holy  Baths  in    Bharata  such  as 
Puskara,  Prabhasa,  Naimisa,   Sagarodaka,  Indramarga, 

Devika,  Svarnabindu,  Hiranyabindu,    Indratoya,    and 
such  other  numerous  tirthas.  (Mahabharata,  AnuSasana 
Parva,  Chapter  25,  Stanzas  7-71). 
3)      Other  details: 

( 1 )  Daksa    gave  his    two   daughters    in  marriage    to 
Ahgiras.      (Devi  Bhagavata,  Skandha  7). 

(2)  Angiras  once    saved    the     Sun.     (Mahabharata, 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  92,  Stanza  6) . 

(3)  While  the  Pandavas  were  in  exile  in  forest,  Ahgiras 
had  been  chanting  and  meditating    in    Alakananda    in 
the    region    of    the   mount    Gandhamadana.     (Maha- 
bharata, Aranya  Parva,  Chapter  142,  Stanza  6). 

(4)  When  the  hermits  had  stolen  the  lotus    flowers  of 
Agastya,    Ahgiras   gave  some    hints    about  the  culprits. 
( Mahabharata,    Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  94,  Stanza 
20:  See   Agastya). 

(5)  Aiigiras  once  gave  a  discourse  on  fasting  and  the 
merits   of   fasting.    (Mahabharata,   Anusasana    Parva, 
Chapter  106,  Stanzas  11  to  16). 

(6)  Angiras  on  another  occasion  delivered  lectures  on 
the  secrets  of  duties.   (Mahabharata,  Anusasana  Parva, 
Chapter  127,  Stanza  8) . 

(7)  Once  Ahgiras  drank  the  water  in  the  ocean  to  the 
last  drop.    (Mahabharata,  Anusasana  Parva,    Chapter 
153,  Stanza  3). 

(8)  When  his  thirst  was  not  quenched,  even  though  he 
had   drunk    the  entire  water  available  in  the  world,  he 
created  new  springs  of  water  again  and  drank  them  dry. 

(Mahabharata,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  153,  Stanza 

( 9)  Once  Agni  failed  to  show  respect  to  Ahgiras,  who 
cursed    Agni  and   thenceforward  smoke  came  out  from 
fire.    (Mahabharata,    Anusasana   Parva,    Chapter  153, 
Stanza  8) . 

(10)  Ahgiras  conducted  many  of  the  important  sacrifices 
of  King  Aviksit.  (Mahabharata,  Asvamedhika  Parva, 
Chapter  4,  Stanza  22). 

(11)  Indra   once  gave  Ahgiras  a  boon.  (Mahabharata, 
Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  18,  Stanzas  5  to  7) . 

(12)  Ahgiras    blessed  Dhruva   who    had    been  doing 
penance.   (Visnu  Purana,  Amsa  1,  Chapter  11). 

(13)  The   daughters    named    Sinivali,    Kuhu,    Raka, 
Anumati  were  born  to  Ahgiras  by  his  wife  Smrti.  (Agni 
Purana,  Chapter  20) . 

14)  Ahgiras  is  the  first  of  the  Agni  devas  (Fire-Gods) 
and  a  hermit.  He  had  a  son  called  Hiranya-Stupa,  who 
also  was  a  hermit  (Rgveda,  Mandala  1,  Anuvaka  7, 
Sukta  31). 

(15)  The  Hermit  Ahgiras  began  to  invoke  the  Gods  to 
get  a   son  equal  to  Indra.  Then    Indra,    thinking   that 
nobody   should   be  born  as  his  equal,  took  birth  as  the 
son     of    Angiras.     He    was    called    Savya.    (Rgveda, 
Mandala  1,  Anuvaka  10,  Sukta  51). 

( 16)  Indra  sent  Sarama,  the  bitch  of  the  Gods,  to  find 
out  the  place  where  the  cows  had  been  hidden  ;  Indra 
acted    according  to  the    advice  of  Ahgiras.  At  first  the 
bitch  did  not  consent  to  go.  But  when  Devendra  promised 
to  feed    her  young  one  with  milk  she    agreed.  Sarama 
found  out  the   place   where  the  cows  were  hidden    and 
informed  Indra  of  it.  (Rgveda,  Mandala  1,  Anuvaka  1 1, 
Sukta  62). 

17)  Rbhus  are  the  sons  of  Sudhanva.  (Son  ofAiigiras). 
The  hermit  Kutsa  also  is  descended  from  Ahgiras. 
(Rgveda,  Mandala  1,  Anuvaka  16,  Sukta  10). 




(18)  Angiras  was  the  son  of  Brahma  in  the  Svayambhuva 
Mauvautara     (See  Manvantara),    but    in    the    Vaiva- 
svata  Manvantara  he  \vas  born  from  Agni. 

(19)  Once  Yilyu    (the  Wind-God)    had    to  run    away 
from   Angiras  and  hide  himself  as  he  had  caused  some 
displeasure  to  Angiras.  On    another    occasion    Angiras 
taught  philosophy  and    sacred    doctrines    to  the  hermit 
Saunaka.   (Mundakopanisad). 

ANGIRAS  11.  In  the  family  of  Marici,  son  of  Brahma, 
another  King  of  the  name  of  Angiras  is  seen. 
Genealogy.  Descended  from  Visnu  in  the  following 
order  :  Brahma,  Marici,  Kasyapa,  Vaivasvata  Manu, 
Uttanapada,  Dhruva,  Sisti,  Ripu,  Caksusa  Manu, 
Uru,  Angiras.  (About  this  Angiras,  no  other  informa- 
tion is  available  in  the  Puranas.  Visnu  Purana,  Arhsa 
1,  Chapter  13;  Agni  Purana,  Chapter  18). 

ANGIROBHAVA.  A  hermit  named  Kakslvan.  (Rgveda, 
Man.lala  1,  Anuvaka  17,  Sukta  120). 

ANlKAVIDARArilA.  A  brother  of  Jayadratha,  a  King 
of  the  kingdom  of  Sindhu.  Arjuna  killed  him.  (M.B., 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  265,  Verse  12). 

ANIKETA.  A  Yaksa,  one  of  the  attendants  of  Kubera. 
(M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  10,  Verse  18).  He  was  a 
king  of  the  Anga  dynasty.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  277). 

ANlKINl.  A  division  of  the  army.  (See  under  AKSAU- 

ANILA  I.  One  of  the  Asta  (8)  Vasus.  His  father  was 
Dharma  and  mother  Svasa.  Anila  married  Siva  and  had 
two  sons,  Manojava  and  Avijnati.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  66,  Verses  17-25). 

ANILA  II.  Garuda  had  a  son  called  Anila.  (M.B., 
Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  101,  Verse  9). 

ANILA  III.  A  word  used  as  a  synonym  of  Siva.  (M.B., 
AnuSasana  Parva,  Chapter  149,  Verse  100). 

ANILA  IV.  A  word  used  as  a  synonym  of  Visnu.  (M.B., 
AnuSasana  Parva,  Chapter  149,  Verse  38). 

ANILA  V.  A  Ksatriya  King.  His  father,  Vrsadarbhi 
presented  him  as  Daksina  to  the  Saptarsis  (7  sages)  at 
a  yajna  performed  by  him  (father) .  The  King  expired 
soon  after  this.  There  was  then  a  famine  in  the  country. 
The  Saptarsis,  tortured  by  hunger  and  thirst  got  ready 
to  prepare  food  with  the  corpse  of  the  King.  But  the 
corpse  retained  its  form  and  they  could  not  cook  food 
with  it.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  96) . 

ANlLA.  A  famous  serpent.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter 
35,  Verse  7) . 


1)  General.  How  he  got  the  name  Animandavya.  Once 
there  was  a  famous  Brahmin  n  med  Mandavya.  He  did 
Tapas  (penance)  for  many  years  standing  silent  in 
front  of  his  Asrama,  under  a  tree,  raising  his  hands  in 
prayer.  At  that  time  some  thieves  happened  to  pass  by 
that  place,  with  stolen  property  belonging  to  the  King. 
Finding  that  the  King's  men  were  pursuing  them,  the 
thieves  fled  away  after  leaving  their  stolen  property  in 
M:~.ridavya's  AJrama.  The  King's  men  seized  Mandavya 
with  the  king's  property.  Even  prolonged  and  repeated 
questionings  did  not  bring  out  a  single  word  from 
Mandavya.  At  last  the  thieves  were  caught.  Mistaking 
him  as  one  of  the  thieves,  the  King's  men  produced 
Mandavya  also  along  with  the  thieves  before  the  King. 
The  thieves  were  all  condemned  to  death.  The  royal 
executioners  took  all  of  them  to  the  place  of  execution 
and  stuck  them  up  at  the  tip  of  a  trident  (Sula).  The 
thieves  died,  but  even  after  a  long  time  Mandavya  did 

not  die.  In  Mahabharata,  Anusasana  Parva,  Verses  46- 
51 ,  it  is  said  that  at  this  stage  Siva  appeared  and  blessed 
him  with  longevity  and  then  vanished.  Several  Munis  in 
the  shape  of  birds  came  near  Mandavya  who  was  lying 
on  the  trident  and  made  enquiries  about  him.  The  King 
came  to  know  of  all  these  stories.  Full  of  repentance,  he 
went  and  begged  pardon  of  Mandavya.  The  attempt 
to  pull  out  the  trident  from  Mandavya's  body  failed.  At 
last  it  was  removed  by  cutting  it  off.  Since  the  tip  (Ani) 
of  the  trident  was  left  behind  in  his  body  he  was  there- 
after known  as  "Ani  Mandavya".  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  107) . 

2)  Curse  on  Dharma.     After  going  about    in   the   world 
for  many  years  with  the  tip  of  the  trident  in  his  body, 
Ani  Mandavya  once  asked  Dharma  :  "Oh!  Lord,  why 
is  it  that  an  innocent  man  like  me  is  afflicted  with    the 
trident   ?".     Dharma   answered:     "In    your    boyhood 
you    once    caught    small  birds   and  pierced  them  with 
a  grass  reed.  It  is  a  result  of  that  sin  that  you  have  been 
pierced   with  the  trident."  Mandavya  replied  :     "The 
Sastras  ordain  that    there   shall  be  no  punishment    for 
sins  committed   till    the    age  of  twelve.   Therefore  the 
punishment  inflicted  on  me  is    wrong.  As    the    murder 
of  a  Brahmin  is  a   greater    sin  than  any  other  murder, 
may  you  be  born  as  a  man  in  the  'Sudra  Caste'." 

By  the  above  curse  of  Mandavya,  Dharma  was  born  a 
son  of  a  Sudra  woman.  It  was  this  child  who  later  on 
became  the  renowned  Vidura  of  the  Mahabharata. 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  107) . 

3)  The  story   of  how    the   Sun  did  not  rise.     When  Ani 
Mandavya  lay  on  the  tip  of  the  trident  another  event 
happened.  Atri  Muni's  son  UgraSravas  was  the  husband 
of  Silavatl.    No    other    woman    had   so    far    surpassed 
Silavati  in  her  fidelity  to  her  husband.  Once  Ugrasravas 
happened  to  fall  ill.    He  expressed  his  desire  to  visit  a 
prostitute's  house.  As  he  was  too  weak  he  could  not  walk. 
The    devoted  wife   Silavati    carried  him   on    her    own 
shoulders  and  took  him  to  the  prostitute's  house.  They 
were  passing  near  the  piace  where  Ani  Mandavya   was 
lying   on    the  trident.  Coming  to  know  of   the  matter, 
Mandavya  pronounced  a  curse  that  UgraSravas  should 
die  before    sunrise.  Silavati  shuddered  on  hearing  this. 
Fearing  that  she  would    be  widowed    by  the  death  of 
UgrasVavas,  she,  in  her  turn,  pronounced  a  curse  that 
the  Sun  should  not  rise  again. 

Next  day  the  sun  did  not  rise.  All  activities  came  to  a 
standstill.  At  last  the  gods  approached  Atri  Muni.  They 
in  uced  Anasuya,  Atri's  wife  to  persuade  Silavati  to 
withdraw  her  curse.  Then  the  sun  rose  again  and 
Ugrasravas  died.  (Brahmanda  Purana,  Chapter  42) . 

4)  Other  details.     When    the  Pandavas    were    living  in 
Hastinapura,  Sri   Krsna  once  paid  a  visit  to  them.  On 
his  way   he   met  with  certain  munis.  Among  them  was 
Ani  Mandavya  also.  (M.B.,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  83). 

5)  Once  the  King  of  Videha  told  Mandavya  that   the 
world  is  transient  and  advised  him  to  strive  for  spiritual 
peace.    Ani     Mandavya    who    was    pleased     with    the 
King'sadvice  attained  moksa  (salvation)  at  once.  (M.B., 
Santi  Parva,  Chapter  276,  Verses  3-14). 

ANIMISA.  Verse  10,  Chapter  101  of  Udyoga  Parva 
refers  to  one  Animisa,  son  of  Garuda.  Also  the  word 
is  used  as  a  synonym  of  Siva  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva, 
Chapter  17,  Verse  14)  and  of  Visnu.  (M.B.,  AnuSasana 
Parva,  Chapter  149,  Verse  36). 




ANIRUDDHA.     Grandson  of  Sri  Krsna. 

1 )  Genealogy.  From  Visnu  was  born  in  this  order  : 
Brahma,  Atri,  Candra,  Budha,  Pururavas,  Ayus, 
Nahusa,  Yayati,  Yadu,  Sahasrajit,  Satajit,  Hehaya, 
Dharma,  Kunti,  Bhadrasena,  Krtavlrya,  Karttavlry- 
arjuna,  Jayadhvaja,  Talajarhgha,  Vitihotra,  Ananta, 
Durjaya,  Yudhajit,  Sini,  Satyaka,  Satyaki,  Jaya,  Kuni, 
Anamitra,  Prsni,  Citraratha,  Viduratha,  Sura,  Sini, 
Bhoja,  Hrdika,  Surasena,  Vasudeva,  Sri  Krsna,  Pra- 
dyumna,  Aniruddha. 

2)  Birth.     Sri  Krsna  had  16008  wives.  Out  of  the  16008 
from    Rukminl   was    born  Pradyumna    and   from  Pra- 
dyumna,  Aniruddha. 

3)  Kidnapped  by   Ufa.     One  of  the   stories  about    this 
handsome  prince  refers  to  his  being  kidnapped  by    Usa 
daughter  of  Banasura.  Banasura,  chief  among  the  100 
sons  of  emperor  Mahabali  had  1000  hands.  Siva  pleased 
by   the   sacrificial   devotion   of  Banasura    granted,    as 
requested  by  him,  the  boon  that  he  himself  (Siva)  and 
ParvatI  would   guard    the    fort  of  the  Asura,  of  course 
with  some    reluctance.    Now,  none  had  the  prowess  to 
attack  this    valiant  Asura.  Overflowing  with  conceit  at 
this  he   challenged   Siva  to  a  fight.    Siva  foretold  that 
the   flagstaff  of  Bana  would    one    day   be    broken  and 
then  a    powerful    antagonist    would    defeat  him.    Bana 
impatiently  awaited  the  threatened  day. 

One  day  Usa  happened  to  witness  the  scene  of  Siva 
and  ParvatI  engaged  in  love-making.  Excited  by  the 
sight  Usa  too  desired  to  enact  such  a  scene  with  a  lover, 
and  she  intimated  her  desire  to  Parvatl.  ParvatI  told 
her  that  Usa  would,  within  three  days,  see  in  a  dream 
a  handsome  prince  with  whom  she  might  make  love. 
Accordingly,  dressed  herself  in  all  glory  with  choicest 
ornaments  Usa  awaited  the  happy  day.  On  the  third 
day  a  handsome  prince  appeared  before  her  in  her 
dream.  Waking  up,  she  began  crying.  Seeing  Usa  crying 
Citralekha,  her  companion,  and  daughter  of  her  father's 
minister,  assured  her  (Usa)  that  whoever  might  be  the 
prince  who  appeared  in  her  dream  shall  be  brought 
down  with  the  power  of  Mantra.  Citralekha  drew  the 
pictures  of  all  princes  known  to  her  and  showed  them  to 
Usa.  The  pictures  represented  all  handsome  men  from 
Devas  to  men.  'No,  this  is  not  my  prince  charming'  was 
Usa's  reply.  Then  Citralekha  drew  the  picture  of  Sri  Krsna 
of  Pradyumna.  and  then  of  Aniruddha.  When  Usa  saw 
Aniruddha's  picture  she  stretched  her  hands  to  embrace 
that.  It  was  this  prince  who  had  appeared  before  her 
in  the  dream. 

Next  night  Citralekha,  by  the  power  of  her  Mantra, 
brought  into  Usa's  room  from  Dvaraka.  Aniruddha,  who 
was  then  in  his  sleep.  While  Usa  and  Aniruddha  were 
thus  together  in  the  room  her  father,  Bana,  got  scent 
of  it  and  took  Aniruddha  into  custody. 
The  disappearance  of  Aniruddha  led  to  much  commotion 
in  Dvaraka.  Then  Narada  reached  Dvaraka  and  gave 
details  about  the  Aniruddha  incident.  Sri  Krsna  and 
Pradyumna,  in  all  rage,  hurried  to  Bana's  palace  and 
encircled  his  palace  with  a  strong  army.  ThendidBana's 
flagstaff  break  into  two  and  fell  down.  The  fierce  fight 
that  ensued  ended  in  the  defeat  of  Bana.  Aniruddha 
married  Usa  and  the  elated  couple  started  for  Dvaraka. 
Vajra  was  the  son  of  Aniruddha.  (Bhagavata,  Dasatna 
Skandha,  Chapters  61,  62  and  63) . 
4)  More  information.  (1)  It  was  at  the  feet  Of  Arjuna 
that  Aniruddha  mastered  the  Dhanurveda  (Science 

of  warfare).     (M.B.,    Sabha  Parva,   Chapter    4,   Verse 

(2)  Aniruddha  is  also  conceived  in  the  forms  of   Visnu 
and     Brahma.      (M.B.,    Bhisma    Parva,     Chapter    65, 
Verses  69  and  70). 

(3)  Brahma  was    born  from    the    abdominal    centre  of 
Aniruddha  when  the  latter  had  taken  the  form  of  Visnu. 
(M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  341,  Verses  15-17). 

(4)  The   word  Aniruddha  is  also  used  as  a  synonym  of 
Visnu.    (M.B.,  Anusr.sana   Parva,  Chapter    149,   Verse 

ANIRUDDHA  II.  The  Mahabharata  refers  to  another 
Aniruddha  who  belonged  to  the  Vrsni  dynasty.  Both 
the  Aniruddhas  were  present  at  the  wedding  of  Pancall. 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  185,  Verses  17-20). 

ANIRUDDHA  III.  The  Mahabharata  mentions  yet 
another  King  Aniruddha.  He  did  not  eat  flesh.  (M.B., 
Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  115,  Verse  15). 

ANJALIKASRAMA.  This  is  a  sacred  place.  One  who 
lives  at  this  Tirtha  for  some  time,  gets  the  benefit  of 
visiting  the  sacred  tirtha  at  Kanyakumari  ten  times. 
(M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  25,  Verse  52). 

ANJALIKAVEDHA(M).  This  is  an  art  by  which  an 
elephant  could  be  made  to  stand  submissively.  Bh'ma- 
sena  had  mastered  this  art.  (M.B.,  Drona  Parva. 
Chapter  26,  Verse  23). 

ANJANA.  1)  Mother  of  Hanuman— Wife  of  Kesari, 
the  noble  monkey  and  daughter  of  Kunjara,  the  monkey 
leader.  She  was  the  mother  of  Hanuman.  Once  while 
Siva  and  ParvatI  were  gamboling  in  the  guise  of  monkeys, 
rambling  through  the  woods,  ParvatI  became  pregnant. 
That  pregnancy  was  given  to  Vayu.  At  that  time 
Aftjana  was  doing  penance  for  an  issue.  Vayu  transferred 
the  pregnancy  he  had  received  from  ParvatI  to 
Aftjana.  Thus  Aryan'!  gave  birth  to  Hanuman.  (Valmiki 
Ramayana,  Kiskindha  Kanda,  Sarga  66) . 
Aftjana  gave  birth  to  Hanuman  in  the  woods  in  a  valley 
on  the  southern  side  of  Mahameru.  She  was  frightened 
at  the  sight  of  the  child  shining  like  the  sun.  Hanuman 
began  to  cry  for  mother's  milk.  Aiijana  said  to  Hanu- 
man :  "Monkeys  are  fond  of  red  ripe  fruits.  There- 
fore eat  whatever  you  find  in  red  colour."  Saying  this 
Aftjana  transformed  herself  into  a  goddess  and  went  to 

2)  Purvajanma  (  Previous  Birth  ) .  In  her  previous 
birth  Aftjana  was  a  goddess  named  Punjikastala  (Mana- 
garva) .  As  a  result  of  a  curse,  this  goddess  was  born 
as  a  she-monkey  in  the  Himalaya  region.  With  the  birth 
of  Hanuman,  the  curse  was  lifted.  (Uttara  Ramayana). 
For  more  details  see  "Punjikastala". 

ANJANA.  This  is  an  elephant  belonging  to  the  Asuras. 
His  origin  is  in  the  f  mily  of  Supratlka.  The  other 
three  elephants  born  in  this  family  are  :  Airavata, 
Vamana  and  Kumuda.  (This  Airavata  was  not  the 
Airavata  of  Devendra).  There  are  references  to 
Raksasas  coming  to  the  battle-field  on  the  back  of 
elephants.  There  is  another  mention  of  Aftjana  the 
elephant  standing  in  the  battle-field.  (M.B.,  Udyoga 
Parva,  Chapter  99,  Verse  15;  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  64, 
Verse  57;  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  112,  Verse  32). 

ANJANA(M).  This  is  the  name  of  a  mountain.  (M.B., 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  98,  Verse  15). 

ANJANA  PARVAN.  He  was  the  son  of  Ghatotkaca  and 
grandson  of  Bhimasena.  For  genealogy,  see  BHlMA- 
SENA.  (M.B.,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  194,  Verse  20). 




Asvatthama,    the  son   of    Drona,    killed    Afljanaparva. 
(M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  196,  Verse  89) . 

AXKTA.  Son  born  to  Hhhsa  by  Adharma.  (Visnu 

AXKTAM  (ASATYA).  Hirhsa,  the  wife  of  Adharma, 
gave  birth  to  daughters,  Anrta  and  Nikrti,  and  from 
them  were  born  Bhaya,  Naraka,  Maya  and  Vedana. 
And,  May'i  begot  Mrtyu,  the  killer  of  all  living  beings. 
From  Vedana  was  bom  sorrow.  And  from  Mrtyu  were 
born  disease  (vyaclhi) ,  Jara  (wrinkles),  Soka  (grief), 
Trsna(desire)  and  Krodha  (anger).  (Agni  Purana, 
Chapter  20). 

ANTACARA(M).  A  place  in  ancient  India.  (M.B., 
Bhlsma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  68). 

ANTAKA  I.  Once  the  Devas,  under  the  auspices  of 
emperor  Prthu,  turned  goddess  earth  into  a  cow  and 
milked  her.  The  result  was  twelve  yamas,  and  Antaka 
was  one  of  the  twelve.  (See  Prthu).  (M.B.,  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  69,  Verse  26) . 

ANTAKA  II.  The  Rgveda  makes  mention  of  one 
R;ijarsi,  Antaka.  (Rgveda,  Mandala  1,  Anuvaka  16, 


ANTARDHAMA.  Son  of  King  Arhsa  of  the  Manu  dy- 
nasty. He  had  a  son  called  Havirdhama.  (M.B.,  Anu- 
gasana  Parva,  Chapter  147,  Verse  23).  And  for 
genealogy  see  Manuvams'a. 

ANTARDHANA.  A  King,  the  son  of  Prthu.  (For  genea- 
logy see  Prthu) .  (Visnu  Purana,  Part  1,  Chapter  11). 

ANTARDHANA  (M) ."  A  weapon  of  Kubera.  (M.B., 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  41,  Verse  38). 

ANTARDHI.  A  son  of  emperor  Prthu.  (Agni  Purana, 
Chapter  18) .  For  genealogy  see  Prthu. 

ANTARGIRI.  A  place  in  between  the  Himalaya  ranges. 
(M.B.,  Bhlsma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  49).  Arjuna 
conquered  this  place.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter 
27,  Verse  3) . 

ANTARlKSA  I.  One  of  the  seven  sons  of  Murasura,  the 
other  six  being  Tamra,  Sravana,  Vasu,  Vibhavasu, 
Nabhasvan  and  Aruna.  After  the  death  of  their  father 
they  quarrelled  with  Sri  Krsna  and  were  killed  by  him. 
(Bhagavata,  Dasama  Skandha,  Chapter  59,  Verse  19) . 

ANTARlKSA  II.  A  Raja  named  Antariksa  is  men- 
tioned in  the  Bhagavata. 

Genealogy.  Visnu,  Brahma,  Svayambhuva,  Priyavrata, 
Agmdhra,  Nabhi,  Rsabha,  Antariksa.  Svayambhuva 
Manu  had  two  sons,  Uttanapada  and  Priyavrata. 
Dhruva  was  the  son  of  Uttanapada.  Priyavrata  married 
Barhisrnati,  and  they  had  eleven  children  including 
Agmdhra.  Agnidhra  married  Purvacitti,  a  Deva  wo- 
man, and  they  became  parents  to  nine  sons,  viz.  Nabhi, 
Kimpurusa,  Hari,  Ilavrta,  Ramyaka,  Hiranmaya, 
Kuru,  BhadraSva  and  Ketumala.  Nabhi  wedded  Meru- 
devi,  and  to  them  were  born  100  sons.  The  eldest  son 
was  Bharata,  after  whom  this  country  (India)  is 
named.'i.e.,  Bharata.  Bharata  had  9  younger  brothers, 
namely  Kusavarta,  Havana,  Brahmavarta,  Malaya, 
Ketu,  Bhadrasena,  Indrasprk,  Vidarbha  and  Klkafa.  * 
These  brothers  had  nine  younger  brothers  who  were  all 
highly  evolved  yogis.  They  were  Kavi,  Hari,  Anta- 
riksa, Prabuddha,  Pippalayana,  Avirhotra,  Dramida, 
Camasa  and  Karabhajana.  (Bhagavata,  Pancama 
Skandha,  Chapteis  1-4). 

ANTARVASA.  A  place  in  ancient  India.  (M.B.,  Sabha 
Parva,  Chapter  59,  Verse  17). 

ANU.     ( See  ANUDRUHYU) . 

AJ^U.  The  Prince  n,amed  Aim  was  the  son-in-law  of 
Suka  Brahmarsi,  son  of  Vyasa.  Suka  Brahmarsi  married 
tlic  beautiful  Plvarl,  the  daughter  of  the  Pitrs.  Suka- 
deva  and  Pi  van  had  four  sons:  Krsna,  Gauraprabha, 
Bhuri  and  Devasruta  and  a  daughter  named  Kirti. 
Kirti  was  married  to  Prince  Arm  the  son  of  Digbhraja. 
(Devi  Bhagavata,  Prathama  Skandha) . 

ANUCAKRA.  One  of  the  two  attendants  deputed  by 
Tvasta  (a  Prajapati)  to  help  Skar.da  in  war,  the  other 
being  Cakra.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  45,  Verse 
40).  _ 

ANUCANA.  A  nymph.  This  Devastri,  along  with  other 
nymphs  came  down  on  earth  at  the  time  of  the  birth 
of  Arjuna  and  danced.  (Adi  Parva,  Chapter  122, 
Verse  "61). 

ANUDATTA.  One  of  the  five  sons  created  by  Panca- 
janya  for  the  Pitrs.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  220, 
Verse  10). 

ANUDATTA  (M),  The  fire  (Agni)  called  Pancajanya 
created  the  elements  named  Anudattas.  Pancajanya 
generated  these  elements  from  his  two  hands  with 
the  help  of  his  spiritual  strength  (tapassakti) .  (M.B., 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  220,  Verse  10) . 

ANUDARA.  One  of  the  hundred  sons  of  Dhrtarastra. 
(See  Kauravas) . 

ANUDRUHYU.     Son  of  Yayati. 

1)  Genealogy.     Descended    from    Visnu  thus:    Brahma, 
Atri,      Candra,     Budha,      Pururavas,    Ayus,    Nahusa, 
Yayati,  Anudruhyu. 

2)  Birth.     Yayati  had  two  sons,  Yadu  and  Turvasu,  by 
Devayanl,    and    three    sons,  Druhyu,  Anudruhyu  and 
Puru  by  Sarmistha.   (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  12). 

ANUDYOTAPARVA.  An  inner  parva  of  Sabha  Parva. 
In  this  parva  is  told  the  story  of  the  game  of  dice 
played  between  Duryodhana  and  Dharmaputra. 

ANUGlTAPARVA.  A  sub-section  of  As  vamedha  Parva. 
(See  M.B.). 

ANUGOPTA.  A  Visvadeva.  (M.B..  Anusasana  Parva, 
Chapter  91,  Verse  37). 

AlilUHA.  A  King  in  ancient  India.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  1 ,  Verse  232). 

ANUHLADA.     Brother  of  Prahlada. 

1)  Genealogy.  Descended  from  Visnu  thus:  Visnu, 
Brahma,  KaSyapa  Hiranyakasipu,  Anuhlada. 
2}Birth.  KaSyapa  married  Did,  daughter  of  Daska.  Dili 
was  a  younger  sister  of  Aditi.  The  sons  of  Aditi  became 
devas  and  the  sons  of  Dili  became  asuras.  Dili  gave 
birth  to  two  sons  named  Hiranyaksa  and  Hiranya- 
kasipu and  a  daughter  Sirhhika.  Simhika  was  given  in 
marriage  to  Vipracitti.  They  had  two  sons,  Rahu  and 
Ketu.  Five  sons  were  born  to  Hiranyaksa  and  four  sons 
were  born  to  Hiranyakasipu.  These  four  sons  were  : 
Anuhlada,  Hlada,  Prahlada  and  Sarhhlada.  (Visnu 
Purana,  ArriSa  1,  Chapter  15  and  Agni  Purana,  Chap- 
ter 19). 

ANUKARMA.  A  Visvadeva.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva, 
Chapter  91,  Verse  39). 

ANUKRAMA1VIKA  PARVA.  The  Mahabharata  is  di- 
vided into  18  parvans.  The  first  of  them  is  called  Adi 
Parva  and  the  first  of  its  many  sub-divisions  is  nartied 

*Ramanuja's  Bhagavata  (Malayalam)  mentions  one  Aryavarta  also  as  Bharata's  younger  brother.  But  (the  name   does  not  occur  in  the 
original.  ^See  Bhagavata,  Chapter  4,  Verse  10.) 




Anukramanika   Parva.  And,    in    this  parva    (Chapter) 
Ugrasravas  (Sutanandaria)  son  of  Lomaharsana  begins 
telling    the    Bharata    story    at  the    yajna  (of  12  years' 
duration)     held    by    Kulapati  Saunaka  at  the    forest  of 
Naimisa.      Vyasa    composing    the     Mahabharata,    the 
creation  of  the  world,  the  greatness  of  the  Mahabharata, 
Vyasa  teaching  his  disciples    the  Mahabharata — all  this 
comes  in  this  narration.      ( See  Mahabharata) . 
ANUMATI.  Daughter  of  Angiras,  son  of  Brahma.  Angiras 
had  .two   wives,  Smrti  and  Khyati ,  and  four  daughters, 
Anumati,  Raka,  Kuhu  and  Sinlvali  by  Smrti,  and  three 
sons,  Ucatthya,  Brhaspati,  Sarhvarta  by  Khyati.   (Visnu 
Purana,  Part  1,  Chapter  10). 
ANUMLOCA.     Anapsaras.  (Harivamsa  326) . 
ANUPAKA.     A  warrior  from   Anupa(m). 
ANUPA  (M) .     A    famous   place  in  ancient    India.  Some 
scholars    hold    the   view    that      Anupa    is    near    river 
Narmada.  (Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  51,  Verse  24). 
ANUPATI.     A  synonym  of  Karttavlrya.    (Vana    Parva, 

Chapter  116,  Verse  19). 
ANUPAVRTTA.     A    place    in    ancient    India.    (M.B., 

Bhlsma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  48). 
ANUSASANA  PARVA.  One  of  the  Parvans  of  the  Maha- 
bharata. (See  Bharata). 
ANUSNA.     A   river  in    ancient    India.     (M.B.,   Bhisma 

Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  24). 
ANUSRUTASRAVAS.         Son       of       Somali       (Visnu 

Purana ) . 

ANUSTUP.  One  of  the  seven  horses  of  the  Sun  God, 
the  other  six  being,  Gayatri,  Brhati,  Usnik,  Jagati, 
Tristup  and  Parikti.  (Visnu  Purana,  Part  II,  Chapter 

ANUVINDA  I.  One  of  the  100  sons  of  Dhrtarastra. 
There  is  a  story  in  the  Mahabharata  about  his  being 
imprisoned  along  with  Duryodhana.  Knowing  that  the 
Pandavas  were  living  in  the  forest  in  all  comfort  and 
happiness  Duryodhana  and  others  went  in  precession  to 
them.  Anuvinda  also  was  in  the  procession.  While 
Duryodhana  and  party  were  staying  in  a  tent  in  the 
forest,  a  Gandharva  named  Citrasena  appeared  on  the 
scene  and  imprisoned  them.  Anuvinda  too  was  im- 
prisoned. (See  Citrasena).  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter 
242,  Verse  8) .  He  was  killed  in  war  by  Bhimasena. 
(M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  127,  Verse  66) . 
ANUVINDA  II.  The  puranas  refer  to  one  Anuvinda,  a 
prince  of  Avanti.  (1)  He  had  a  brother  called  Vinda. 
(2)  He  was  defeated  by  Sahadeva  who  set  forth  to  sub- 
jugate the  kings  of  the  south  just  before  the  Rajasuya 
yajna  of  Dharmaputra.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter 
31,  Verse  10).  (3)  An  Aksauhini  (division  of  army) 
was  despatched  by  Anuvinda  to  help  Duryodhana. 
(M.B.,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  19,  Verses  24,  25).  (4) 
On  the  first  day  of  the  war  Vinda  and  Anuvinda  fought 
duels  with  Kuntibhoja.  (M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter 
45,  Verses  72-75) .  (5)  Iravan,  sonofArjuna  defeated 
both  Vinda  and  Anuvinda  in  the  battle.  (M.B.,  Bhisma 
Parva,  Chapter  83,  Verse,  18-22).  (6)  They  fought  with 
Bhima,  Arjuna  and  the  king  of  Virata.  (M.B.,  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  25,  Verses  20).  (7)  Anuvinda  was  killed 
by  Arjuna.  (M.B.,  Drona  parva,  Chapter  399,  Verses 
27-29).  (8)  Vinda  and  Anuvinda  had  a  sister  called 
Mitravinda.  The  three  of  them  were  the  children  of 
Rajadhidevi,  sister  of  Sri  Krsna's  father.  Sri  Krsna 
married  Mitravinda,  which  her  brother  did  not  like. 
This  was  their  reason  for  quitting  the  Pandava  camp 

and  fighting  on  the  side  of  the  Kauravas.  (BhSgavata, 
Dasama  Skandha,  Chapter  58,  Verses  30,  31). 
ANUVINDA  III.  The  Mahabharata  refers  to  another 
prince  Anuvinda  also.  He  was  the  son  of  a  Kekaya- 
raja.  He  also  fought  against  the  Pandavas  and  was 
killed  by  Satyaki.  (M.B.,  Kama  Parva,  Chapter  13, 
Verse  21). 

ANUVINDA.  A  wife  of  Sri  Krsna.  ( Padma  Purana) . 
ANUYAYI.  One  of  the  100  sons  of  Dhrtarastra.  He  is 
called  Agrayayi  also;  he  was  killed  in  battle  by  Bhima- 
sena. (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  67,  Verse  102; 
Chapter  116,  Verse  11  and  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  157, 
Verses  17-20). 

ANVAGBHANU.  A  King  of  the  Puru  dynasty.  (For 
genealogy  see  Puru  dynasty) .  Puru  had  three  sons, 
Isvara,  Raudrasva  and  Pravlra.  He  had  also  another 
son  Manasyu  by  Suraseni,  another  wife.  Anvagbhanu  is 
the  son  born  to  Manasyu  and  his  apsara  wife,  Mitra- 
kesi.  Anvagbhanu  is  known  as  Rceyu  and  Anadhrsti 
also.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  94,  Verses  8-12). 
APALA.  A  daughter  of  the  great  sage,  Atri.  Suffering 
from  leprosy  and  hence  forsaken  by  her  husband  Apala 
stayed  with  her  father  and  started  tapas  to  please 
Indra.  One  day,  on  her  way  home  from  the  river, 
Apala  tasted  the  Soma  which  was  meant  to  be  offered 
to  Indra  and  hearing  the  sound  produced  then 
Devendra  appeared  before  Apala.  She  gave  the  Soma 
to  Indra,  who  was  so  pleased  with  her  that  he  cured 
her  of  her  leprosy.  (Rgveda,  8-91). 

APANTARATAMAS.  1)  General.  A  Maharsi  (Great 
Sage) .  He  was  born  out  of  the  sound  'bhu'  uttered  by 
Mahavisnu.  The  sage  is  also  known  as  Sarasvata  and 
Apantaratamas.  Because  he  was  absolutely  free  from 
inner  darkness  or  ignorance  he  was  called  Apantara- 
tamas. The  sage,  who  was  cognizant  of  the  past,  the 
present  and  the  future  divided  and  systematized  the 
Vedas  as  ordered  by  Visnu. 

2)  Vyasa  was  Apantaratamas  reborn.  Mahavisnu 
ordained  that  in  the  Dvapara  age  he  be  born  as  the 
son  of  Parasara  and  once  again  divide  and  systematize 
the  Vedas,  and  so  was  he  born  as  Vyasa.  (Sri  Saiikara's 
Mundakopanisad  and  Brahmasutra  Bhasya) . 
APANTARATAMA.  (Sarasvata) .  This  is  another  name 

of  Apantaratamas.      (See  Aplntaratamas) . 
APARABRAHMA.      (See  Parabrahma). 
APARAJITA  I.     One  of  the  serpents  born    to    Kasyapa 
ofKadru.    (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,    Chapter  35,    Verse  13). 
APARAJITA  II.    A    King   born    out  of  a  part  of  one  of 
the    eight   Asuras.   who    were    known    the  Kalakeyas. 
( M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  67,  Verse  49) .  The  Pandavas 
had  invited  this  King  before  they  went  to    war.    (M.B., 
Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  21 ). 
APARAJITA  III.     A   son  of  Dhrtarastra.     (M.B.,   Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  67,  Verse  101).  Bhimasena  killed  him. 
(M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter    21,  Verse  22). 
APARAJITA  IV.     A    King   of  the  Kuruvarhsa.  (M.B., 

Adi  Parva,  Chapter  94,  Verse  54) . 

APARAJITA  V.     One   of  the  eleven  Rudras,  the  other 

ten   being   Hara,    Bahurupa,     Tryambaka,    Vrsakapi, 

Sambhu,    KapardI,   Raivata,    Mrgavyadha,  Sarpa  and 

Kapali.      (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  18) . 

APARAJITA  VI.     Used   as   a  synonym    of  Mahavisnu. 

(M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  149,  Verse  89). 
APARAKASI.     A  place  in  ancient  India.  (M.B.,  Bhisma 
Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  42). 




Al'ARAKUXTI.  A  place  in  ancient  India.  (M.B.,  Bhisma 
Parva,  Clhapter  9,  Verse  43). 

APARAMLECCHA(M).  A  place  in  ancient  India. 
(,M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  65). 

APARANANDA.  A  river.  Arjuna  once  crossed  it.  (M.B., 
Adi  Parva,  Chapter  214,  Verses  6  and  7).  Apara- 
nanda.  is  counted  among  the  prominent  holy  rivers. 
M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  165,  Verse  28). 

APARANTA  I.  A  city  on  the  west  coast  of  ancient 
South  India.  (M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse 

APARANTA  II.  Another  name  of  the  Surparaka  temple. 
(M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  4  9,  Verse  67)  . 

APARASEKA(M).  A  place  in  ancient  India.  (M.B., 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  31,  Verse  9). 

APARAVALLAVA  (M) .,  A  place  in  ancient  India. 
(M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  62). 

APARAVIDYA.  Knowledge  is  of  two  categories  or 
types.  Viz. 

I)  Paravldyd.  That  science  or  knowledge,  which  helps 
us  to  know  or  realise  Him  (Brahma)  who  is  without 
either  beginning  or  end,  who  could  neither  be  seen 
with  the  eyes  nor  perceived  by  any  of  the  senses. 
(2)  Apardvidyd.  This  includes  knowledge  of  the  four 
Vcdas  Rg,  Yajus,  Sama  and  Atharva,  the  six  Vedarigas 
(sub-divisions  of  the  Vedas)  Siksa,  Kalpa,  Nirukta, 
Chandas,  Vyakarana,  Apidhana,  Mlmariisa,  Dharma- 
sastra  and  the  puranas,  as  also,  Nyaya  Sastra  (Logic), 
Vaidya  Sastra  (medicine)  Gandharva  Sastra,  Dhanur- 
veda  and  Artha  Sastra  (economics). 

APODADHAUMYA.     (See  Ayodhadhaumya). 

APPAYYADlKSITA.  A  reputed  Rhetorician  in  Sans- 
krit, who  thrived  in  the  16th  Century  A. D.  Rewrote 
two  treatises  on  rhetoric,  the  Kuvalayananda  and 
Citramimamsa.  The  former  is  an  interpretation  of 
chapter  5  of  Jayadeva's  Candraloka  and  is  very  popu- 
lari  n  South  India- 

APRACI.  A  hell.  (See  Naraka) .  (Visnu  Purana,  Part  2, 
Chapter  6) 

APRATISTHA  (M) .     A  hell.  ( See  Naraka ) . 

APSARAS.*  An  Apsaras  is  a  nymph  (devastrl).  These 
apsara  women  were  born  at  the  churning  of  the  ocean 
of  Milk.  (Valmiki  Ramayana,  Balakanda,  Chapter  45, 
Verse  32  and  Visnu  Purana,  Pait  I,  Chapter  9  and 
Agni  Purana,  Chapter  3) .  There  are  thousands  of 
Apsaras.  (Details  given  against  the  names  of  Apsaras). 

APSUHOMYA.  A  great  sage  ( Maharsi )  who  adorned 
the  assembly  of  Yudhisthira.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva, 
Chapter  4,  Verse  12) . 

ARA(ARAJAS).  Daughter  of  Sukra  maharsi.  Iksvaku 
begot  three  sons,  Danda,  Vikuksi  and  Nimi.  After  his 
lather's  death  Danda  became  king  of  the  country  bet- 
ween the  Vindhya  and  the  Himalayas.  In  the  course 
of  a  hunting  expedition  once  Danda  saw  and  was  imme- 
diately attracted  by  the  charms  of  Ara,  daughter  of 
Sukra  maharsi.  He  committed  rape  on  her  and  she 
told  her  father  about  the  attack  by  Danda.  The  Maha- 
rsi asked  his  daughter  to  do  tapas,  and  further  told 

her  that  he  would  burn  Danda's  kingdom  by  a  rain  of 
fire.  Ara  did  tapas,  and  at  the  behest  of  the  Maharsi 
Indra  destroyed  Danda's  kingdom  by  a  downpour  of^ 
rain  of  fire.  Afterwards  this  place  became  a  terrible 
forest  where  neither  birds  nor  animals  lived,  and  came 
to  be  known  as  Dandakaranya.  (Uttara  Ramayana). 

ARAKK1LLAM.  (Palace  of' wax) .  Both  the  Kaurava 
and  the  Pandava  princes  lived  in  Hastinapura.  The 
Pandavas  became  experts  in  archery,  and  their  exemplary 
character  and  conduct  made  them,  so  to  say,  the  apple 
of  their  eyes  to  the  people.  This  evoked  great  jealousy 
in  Duryodhana  who  made  up  his  mind  to  completely 
ruin  the  Pandavas  somehow  or  other.  Duryodhana,  with 
Dhrtarasfra's  consent,  built  a  new  palace  at  Varana- 
vata.  Though  many  others  did  not  know  that  the 
palace  was  made  of  wax  the  Pandavas,  from  secret 
information  knew  the  fact.  But,  they  only  pretended 
ignorance.  Duryodhana  and  his  minister  Purocana, 
saw  to  it  that  the  Pandavas  shifted  their  residence  to 
the  waxen  palace.  Duryodhana  had  planned  to  set  fiie 
to  the  palace  and  burn  to  death  the  Pandavas.  But,  the 
shrewd  Vidura  through  his  messenger  Kanaka  gave 
notice  of  the  conspiracy  to  the  Pandavas  just  in  time. 
One  night  Purocana  set  fire  to  the  waxen  palace,  but 
the  Pandavas  escaped  by  a  secret  passage,  which  the 
architect  of  the  palace  had  made  while  constructing 
it,  and  about  which  the  Pandavas  had  previous  know- 
ledge. The  same  night  a  huntsman,  with  his  five  children, 
was  also  staying  in  the  palace.  As  they  were  uncon- 
scious with  heavy  dosage  of  liquor  they  could  not  es- 
cape the  fire.  Those  six  people,  and  accidentally 
Purocana  too  were  burnt  to  death.  People,  who  gather- 
ed at  the  spot,  thus  saw  seven  corpses,  and  the  news 
was  broadcast  that  the  Pandavas,  including  their  wife 
Pancali  and  their  mother  had  been  burnt  to  dtath. 
This  incident  took  place  one  year  after  the  Pandavas 
had  shifted  their  residence  to  the  waxen  palace.  (M.B., 
Adi  Parva,  Chapters  141-151). 

ARALI.  One  of  the  sons  who  were  Brahmavadins,  of 
Visvamitra.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse 

,     58). 

ARANTUKA.  A  guard  posted  at  a  boundary  line  of 
Kuurksetra.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  83,  Verse 


ARANTUKA.  A  sacred  spot  in  ancient  India,  in  river 
Sarasvatl.  A  bath  there  is  as  beneficial  as  performing 
the  Agnistoma  yajna.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  53, 
Verse  24) . 

AR\NYA.  A  King  of  the  Iksvaku  dynasty.  (See  Iksvaku 
dynasty) . 

ARANYA  PARVA.  A  sub  Parva  in  the  Mahabharata. 
(See  Mahabharata). 

ARATTA(M).  A  place  in  ancient  India.  After  Drona 
was  killed  in  the  great  war,  Krtavarma  ran  away  with 
the  warriors  of  Aratta.  (M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter 
193,  Verse  13). 

*Ari$tha,  a  wife  of  Kasyapa,  delivered  thirteen  Apsaias.  They  were  :  Alambusa,  Misrakesi,  Vidyutparna,  Tilottama,  Raksita, 
Kambha,  Manorama,  Kesini,  Subahu,  Suraja.  Surata  and  Supriya.  Ari?tha  gave  birth  also  to  four  Gandharvas,  Haha,  Huhu,  Atibuhu 
and  Tumburu  as  mentioned  in  the  following  verse. 

AristasiUa  Subhagadevi  devarsitah  pura 

Alambusa  misrakesi  Vidyutparna  Tilottama 

Aruna  raksita  caiva  rambha  tadvat  manorama 

KesinT  ca  subahusca  vikhyatau  ca  hahahuhu 

Tumburusceti  catvarah  srnrtah  gandharvaaattamah. 




ARAYANNAM.    The  swan  (Harhsa). 

1 )  General.  A  bird  (Hamsa)  in  Devaloka.  The  prefix 
'ara'  denotes  royalty,  sublimity,  greatness  etc.  Many 
puranas  describe  Arayannam  as  a  bird  of  the  Devas. 
Manasasaras  at  the  heights  of  the  Himalayas  is  the 
permanent  abode  of  these  divine  birds.  They  do  not 
like  the  rainy  season.  So  they  come  down  to  the  earth 
when  rain  begins  at  the  Manasasaras,  and  go  back  to 
the  Saras,  when  rain  begins  on  the  earth.  This  pheno- 
menon explains  Cerusseri's  (Malayalam  poet)  state- 
ment in  his  Krsnagatha  that  'when  rain  set  in  hamsas 
— Arayannams — began  flying  away'. 

2)  Origin.     Kasyapa,   the  son  of  Brahma,   married  the 
eight  daughters  of  Daksa,  Tamra.  being  one   of  them. 
Tamra    bore    five    daughters    Kraunci,    Bhasi,     Syeni, 
Dhrtarastri    and   Suki.    Syeni   gave  birth    to    the  kite, 
Dhrtarasfri,    the    Harhsa  and    the  Koka  and  Suki  the 
Sukas  (doves).  Koka  or  the  Gakravaki  bird  is  the  sister 
of  Harhsa.  This  is  how   the  Arayanna  and  the  Cakra- 
vaka    got    Devatva     (divinity).    (Valmiki    Ramayana, 
Aranyakanda,  Canto  14) . 

3)  Bhifma  and  the  Arayanna.     SiSupala,  before  his  death, 
blabbered  a    lot   of  unbecoming  things  about  Bhisma, 
whojwas  partial  to  his  (Sisupala's)  enemies.  And,  he  rela- 
ted the  story  of  an  Arayanna  to  elaborate  the  stand  taken 
by  the  aged  Bhisma.  An  aged  Harhsa  (Arayanna )  which 
once  dwelt  on  the  sea-coast  preached    to   all  the  other 
birds  much  about  ethical  actions.  The  birds  felt  great  res- 
pect for  the  Arayanna.  They  flew  across  the  sea  in  search 
of  prey  after  entrusting  their  eggs  to  the  Arayanna.  The 
old  Arayanna   grew  fat  on    those    eggs.  There  was  one 
intelligent  bird  among  the  lot,  and  when  it  looked   for 
the  eggs  they  were  not  to  be  found.  That  bird  informed 
its   colleagues    about    the    treacherous  conduct  of   the 
Arayanna.  The  birds  organised  themselves  and  attacked 
the  Arayanna  to  death.  Oh  !  Bhisma,  the  same   will   be 
your  end  also.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  41    Verses 

4)  Mala    and  Arayanna.     While  Nala,  the  prince  of  the 
Nisadha  kingdom  was  resting    in    a  garden  he    saw  an 
Arayanna  in  a  tank  there.  Out  of  curious  pleasure  Nala 
caught  it,  but  seeing  its  mental  tremor   he   let   it   free. 
Out  of  gratitude    for  this  generous  act,  the    Arayanna 
played  the  role  of  the    messenger  for  Nala  to  get  as  his 
wife    Damayanti,    the   very   beautiful   daughter    of  the 
King  of  Vidarbha. 

5)  How  the  Arayanna  (Harhsa)  got  the  white  colour.     Once 
king    Marutta   was  conducting    the    Mahesvara    Satra 
(a  yaga)  and  Devas  like  Indra    came  down    to   receive 
their  share   of  the   Havis    (oblations    in  the  sacrificial 
fire) .    And,  this   was    the  time    when  Ravana  with  his 
attendants  was  on  his  triumphal  tour.  Hearing  that  the 
Devas  were  at  the   Asrama    of  Marutta,  Ravana    also 
went  there,  and  Indra  and  the  other  Devas,  trembling 
with    fear,    assumed    different    disguises  and  hid  them- 
selves away.  Indra  assumed  the  guise  of  the  peacock, 
Yama  of    the    crow,    Kubera    of   the  chameleon    and 
Varuna  of  the  Arayanna.    Thus  beguiled  Ravana  went 
his  own  way.  The  Devas,  who  thus  escaped  blessed  the 
family  of  those  birds  whose  forms  they   assumed.  Indra 
shaped   the   blue   feathers    of  the  peacock  with  mixed 
colours  and  eyes  like   his   own.    Moreover,    he  blessed 
them    that    they  would    never    be    affected    with    any 
disease,  and  that  they  would  dance  with  their    feathers 
spread   when    rain    set   in.    Yamadharma    blessed    the 

crows  that  they  would  get  the  offerings  made  on  earth 
by  men  to  their  departed  ancestors.  And  Bhagavan 
Varuna  told  the  Raja-Harhsas  :  "I  escaped  the  clutches 
of  Ravana  by  assuming  your  shape  and  form.  Therefore, 
be  thee,  who  are  now  black  and  white,  in  future  as 
purely  white  as  milk".  Kubera  blessed  the  Chameleon 
with  capacity  to  change  colour  as  and  how  it  pleased, 
and  also  for  its  cheeks  to  appear  golden  in  colour  to  the 
onlookers.  After  thus  blessing  the  birds  the  Devas  dis- 
appeared. (Uttara  Ramayana). 

ARBUDA.  An  Asura.  Indra  killed  this  Asura.  (Rgveda, 
Mandala  1,  Anuvaka  10,  Sukta  51). 

ARBUDA  I.  A  naga  (serpent)  living  in  mountains. 
(Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  21,  Stanza  9). 

ARBUDA  II.  The  mountain  Abu.  (Mahabharata>  Vana 
Parva,_Chapter  82,  Stanza  55) . 

ARCANANAS.  A  muni  born  in  the  Atreyagotra  of  the 
dynasty  of  Atri.  He  desired  to  marry  Rathavlti.  But 
her  father  had  decided  to  give  her  in  marriage  only 
to  a  Maharsi,  and,  therefore  Arcananas  became  a 
Maharsi  with  the  help  of  the  Marutta  and  wedded 
Rathaviti.  Maharsi  was  their  son. 

ARCISMATl.  The  fourth  daughter  of  Maharsi  Arigiras. 
(M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  216,  Verse  6). 

ARCIS.  Prthu  and  the  Arcis  were  born  from  the  arms 
of  Vena.  (Bhagavata,  4th  Skandha,  Chapter  15).  Prth'.i 
did  tapas  in  forest  and  gave  up  his  physical  body  in 
fire  and  attained  Vaikunfha  (the  abode  of  Visnu)  with 
the  Arcis.  (Bhagavata,  4th  Skandha).  For  details  see 

ARCISMAT.  A  sect  of  Pitrs.  (M.B.,  S~anti  Parva. 
Chapter  236,  Verse  15). 

ARDHADEVAS  (SEMI-GODS).  In  temples  hermits, 
ancestors,  serpents,  celestial  maids  and  such  others  also 
are  worshipped.  Among  these  there  are  Vasus,  Nagas, 
Asuras,  Paisacas,  Vetalas  and  many  other  classes. 
These  are  the  semi-gods.  (See  Page  27  of  Namva- 
nangum  Daivaiigal). 

ARDHAKlLATlRTHA.  A  holy  ghat  or  bath  built  by 
the  hermit  Darbhi.  (Mahabharata,  Vana  Parva, 
Chapter  83,  Stanza  153). 

ARDHASADHAKA.  A  minister  of  King  DaSaratha.  He 
had  eight  ministers. 

''The  great  king  had  eight  ministers  who  were  pure 
and  famous  and  experts  in  dealing  with  matters  of  their 
concern  :  Jayanta,  Dhrsti,  Vijaya,  Siddha,  Ardha- 
sadhaka,  ASoka,  Mantrapala  and  Sumantra  were 
they".  (Valmiki  Ramayana,  Balakanda,  Sarga  7, 
Stanzas  2  and  3  :  Vallathol  Translation) . 

ARGHABHIHANAPARVA.  A  parva  in  the  Maha- 
bharata. (See  M.B.). 

ARIHA.  A  King  of  the  lunar  dynasty.  He  was  a  son 
born  to  Arvaclna  (a  king  of  the  Puru  dynasty)  and 
Maryada,  a  princess  of  Vidarbha.  Ariha  had  a  son, 
Mahabhauma,  born  of  his  wife,  a  princess  of  Anga. 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  19,  Verses  18-19). 

ARIMEJAYA.     A  Raja  of  the  Puru  dynasty.  (See   Puru 

dynasty).   (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  278). 
ARISTA.     Wife  of  Kasyapa.  The  Gandharvas  were   born 
of  her.  (Agni    Purana,  Chapter   19,  M.B.,    Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  67,  Verse  83) . 

ARISTA  (ARISTAKA).  Anasura,  a  servant  of  Kaihsa. 
Once,  at  the  instance  of  Karhsa  he  went  to  Gokula 
disguised  as  an  ox  to  kill  Sri  Krsna.  The  ox  instilled 
terror  in  people  by  tearing  to  pieces  hills  and  mountaisn 


with  its  horns  and  bellowing  like  hell.  But  Sri  Krsna 
faced  the  beast,  and  rained  blows  on  him  and  it  was 
thrown  hundred  yojanas  away  and  it  died.  At  the  time 
of  death  it  regained  its  I'romer  from  as  Asura.  (Bhaga- 
vata,  Dasama,  Skandha,  Chapter  37) . 

ARISTANEMA  (ARISTANEMI).      (See  Aristanemi) . 

ARISTANEMI  I.     One  of  the  six  sons  of  Vinata. 

1)  Genealogy.  Visnu,  Brahma,  Kasyapa  and  Aristanemi. 
Kasyapa  married  Dhrtarastri,  daughter  of  Daksa.  SukI 
was  their  daughter,  SukI  had  a    daughter    Nata   and 
she    a  daughter,  Vinata.  Aristanemi,  Tarksya,  Aruna, 
Garuda,  Para,  Aruni  and  Sri  Varuni  were  the  children 
of  Vinata.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65,  Verse  40) . 

2)  Tapa&akti  of  Aristanemi.     Aristanemi    with    his    son 
was   once   performing   tapas  in   the  foiest.  The  son  was 
immersed    in  meditation  clad  in  the  skin  of  a  deer  thus 
looking  like  a  deer.  Parapuranjaya,  the  King  of  Hehaya 
who  happened  at   the  time  to  be  hunting  in  the  forest 
discharged  his  arrow  against  the  son  of  Aristanemi  taking 
him  for  a  deer.  When  the  king  found  out  the  real  fact 
he   felt  extremely  sorry,   and  he  craved  pardon  of  the 
boy's  father  for  unwittingly  killing  his  son.  Then  Arista- 
nemi   pointing   out   his    son    who  was  standing    alive 
asked  the  King,    "Is  this  the  boy  whom  you  killed  ?" 
The    King   was    naturally    wonder-struck.    But  Arista- 
nemi told  the  King  that  there  was  nothing  to   wonder 
at  in  the  case  as  nobody  would  be  able  to  kill  them  be- 
cause their  Tapa4sakti  was  so  great.  The  King   felt  so 
happy  at  this,  and  returned  to  his  palace  after  prostrat- 
ing  at  the    feet    of  the    sage.    (M.B.,    Aranya  Parva 
Chapter  184). 

3)    Some   other  details.    (1)    Sumati,  wife  of  King  Sagara 
of  the   Solar  dynasty,  was  the  daughter  of  Aristanemi. 
(Ramayana,    Balakanda,     Canto    38,    Verse    4).     (2) 
Kasyapa   had  the  synonym  Aristanemi  also.  (Valmiki 
Ramayana,      Kiskindhakanda,    Canto    66,   Verse    4  ; 
Devi  Bhagavata,  Saptama   Skandha).  (3)  Aristanemi's 
wives     delivered      sixteen     children.      (Agni    "Purana, 
Chapter    19).    (4)    Aristanemi  has   spoken  a  lot  about 
the    greatness    of   Brahmins.    (M.B.,    Aranya    Parva 
Chapter  184,  Verses  17-22).  (5)    Aristanemi  once  gave 
much   spiritual    advice    to   Ki.ij  Sagara   of  the   Surya 
VamSa.    (M.B.,    Santi     Parva,     Chapter    288,    Verses 

ARISTANEMI  II.  Mahabharata,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter 
208,  Verse  8  refers  to  one  Aristanemi,  the  second  son  of 

ARISTANEMI  III.  A  Raja  called  Aristanemi  occupied 
a  place  m  the  council  of  Yama.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva, 
Chapter  8,  Verse  9). 

ARISTANEMI  IV.  A  false  name  assumed  by  Sahadeva 
while  the  Pandavas  lived  incognito  in  the  Virata  king- 
dom. (M.B.,  Virata  Parva,  Chapter  10,  Verse  5) 

ARISTANEMI  V.  A  synonym  of  Sri  Krsna.  (M.B., 
Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  71,  Verse  5). 

ARISTANEMI  VI.  A  King.  Realising  the  transient 
nature  of  worldly  life,  he  gave  up  his  kingdom  and 
went  to  and  did  tapas  at  Mount  Gandhamadana.  Indra 
who  was  very  much  pleased  at  this  sent  a  messenger 
with  a  vimana  (aeroplane)  to  conduct  the  King  to 
Svarga  (heaven).  When  he  was  told  that  there  was  in 
Svarga  also  the  states  of  being  high  or  low,  and  fall 
happened  when  the  effect  of  good  actions  decreased, 
the  King  gave  up  his  desire  for  Svarga  and  sent  back 
Indra's  messenger.  Then  Indra  sent  the  King  with  a 



messenger  to  the  ASrama  of  Valmiki  so  that  he  might 
gam  spiritual  knowledge.  Valmiki  consoled  the  King 
with  the  advice  that  the  telling,  hearing  and  pondering 
over  the  story  of  the  Ramayana  alone  would  be  enough 
to  get  eternal  salvation.  (Yoeavasistham) 
ARJUNA.  The  third  of  the  Pandavas. 

1 )  Genealogy.     Descended   from'  Visnu  thus  :    Brahma, 
Am,  Candra,  Budha,  Pururavas,  Ayus,  Nahusa,  Yayati, 
Puru,  Janamejaya,  Pracinvan,  Pravira,  Namasyu,  Vita- 
bhaya,      Sundu,     Bahuvidha,      Samyati,      Rahovadi, 
Kaudrasvan,  Matinara,  Santurodha,  Dusyanta,  Bharata, 

uhotra,  Suhota,  Gala,  Gardda,  Suketu,  Brhatksetra 
Hasti,  Ajamidha,  Rksa,  Samvarana,  Kuru,  Jahnu, 
Suratha,  Viduratha,  Sarvabhauma,  Jayatsena,  Ravyaya 
Bhavuka,  Cakroddhata,  Devatithi,  Rksa,Bhima,  Pratlca,' 
Santanu,  Vyasa,  Pandu,  Arjuna. 

2)  Previous  birth.     Arjuna   and  Sri  Krsna  are  often   re- 
ferred to  as  Naranarayanas    (Nara  and  '  Narayana) .    In 
their  previous  life  they  were  two  Rsis    called  Nara  and 
Narayana,  and  from  that    time  onwards  they  lived  as 
inseparable  companions   and  sons  of  the  same  parents. 
I  hey  entered   Mahasamadhi    at  Badaryasrama  in  the 

Himalayas.    Of  the  two  Narayanarsi   was   a  partial  in- 
carnation of  Visnu.  About  the  Nararsi  the  Devi  Bhaga- 
vata   has    the    following    to    say  :     "Dharma  had    his 
origin    in   the  heart   of   Brahma,    and  he  earned  great 
reputation    for    truthfulness    and    adherence    to  Vedic 
dharma.  He  married  the  daughters  of  Daksa.  Dharma 
had   four  sons,  Hari,  Krsna,  Nara  and  Narayana.    Of 
the  four  sons  Hari  and  Krsna  became   great  yogis,  and 
Nara  and   Narayana,   great  tapasvins.  Nara  and  Nara- 
yana did  tapas,  worshipping  Brahma  for  1000  years    at 
the   holy  Badaryasrama  in  the  plains  of  the  Himalayas 
Nara    was    born    in    the    next  birth  as  Arjuna.  (Devi 
Bhagavata,  4th  Skandha) .  See  Nara. 
3)  Birth.     To   Vicitravlrya   son   of  Santanu   was  born 
L>nrtarastra   by    Ambika,    and    Pandu  by    Ambalika. 
andu  had  two  wives,  Kuntl  and  Madrl.  The  curse  of  a 
Muni  made  physical  contacts  with  his  wives  impossible  lor 
Jandu.   (See   Pandu) .    Kuntl,  before  her  marriage  had 
attended  on  Maharsi  Durvasas  who  pleased   with   her 
service  made  a  gift  of  five  mantras  to   her.     The   effect 
of  the  mantras  was  that  Kuntl  would  become  mother  of 
a  son  from  him  about  whom  she  was  thinking  while  she 
repeated   the  mantra.    As    soon  as  she  got  the  mantras 
she  retired  to  a  solitary  place  and  thinking  of  the  Sun- 
.jrod  repeated  the  first  mantra.  At  once  Suryadeva  appear- 
ed and  Karna  was  born  to  her  by  him.   After    assuring 
her  that  the  incident  would  not  affect  her  chastity  Surya 
disappeared.  Kuntl  abandoned  the  child  to  float  in  the 
river  Gaiiga,  and  stayed  with  Pandu  keeping  the  other 
four  mantras  to  herself.  Since  Pandu  could  not  contact 
the  body  of  his  wives,  with  his  permission  Kuntl  began 
practising  the  other  four  mantras  one  by  one.  By  three 
mantras  she  got  three  sons,    Dharmaputra   from  Kala 
Arjuna  from  Indra  and  Bhlmasena  from  the  wind  God 
(Vayu).    The   remaining  one    mantra   Kuntl    gave  lo 
Madrl.  She  repeated    it  thinking  of  the  Asvini '  Devas, 
and  two   sons,  Nakula  and  Sahadeva  were  born  to  her 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,    Chapter  63  onwards). 
4)    Festival  of  birth.     At  the  birth  of  Arjuna  Kuntl  heard 
a  heavenly  voice   declare  as  follows    :     "Oh  !  Kuntl  ! 
your  son  will    be  equal  to  Siva  in  prowess  and  uncon- 
querable just  as  Indra  is.  After  defeating    all  the  Kin?s 
he  will  perform  the    Asvamedha  thrice.   He  will  please 




Siva  and  get  the  great  weapon  called  Pasupata  from 
him.  On  the  orders  of  Indrahe  will  kill  Nivatakavacas. 
Hearing  the  above  prophecy  the  Devas  played  ecstatic 
music  and  flowers  were  showered  from  the  sky.  The 
Saptarsis,  Prajapatis  and  other  sages  arrayed  themselves 
in  the  sky.  Thus,  all  animate  and  inanimate  objects 
celebrated  the  birth  of  Arjuna. 

5)  Naming.     Sages   from    the    top    of    the    Satasrriga 
mountain    came   together   to  perform    the  christening 
ceremony  of  Arjuna.  While   enumerating  the  various 
names    of  Arjuna,  it   is  said    in  the  Virata  Parva  that 
Krsna  was  the  name  Pandu  gave  to  his  son.  (M.B.,  Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  123,  Verse  20). 

6)  Childhood.     The  Pandavas  spent  their  childhood   at 
Hastinapura  with  the  Kauravas.  Then  Arjuna   studied 
the  art  and  science  of  using  weapons,  dance,  music  etc. 
along  with  the  other  boys.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,    Chapter 
129,  Verse  1).  Kasyapa,  the  high  priest  of  Vasudeva 
did    for    Arjuna   the    usual  Samskaras  like  Upanayana 
(wearing  of  the  holy  thread)  etc.  Arjuna    was    taught 
the    first    lessons    in  Dhanurveda  (Science  of  archery) 
by    Rajarsi   Suka.  _  Afterwards,  Krpacarya  became  the 
preceptor    of  the  Pandavas  in  Dhanurveda,  and  it   was 
then  that  Dronacarya  came.  There  is  a  particular  story 
about  Dronacarya  becoming  the  guru.  (See  Drona). 

7)  Special  favour  of  Drona.     Arjuna    showed   very   great 
interest  in  the  science  of  the  use  of  weapons.  Drona,  the 
master,  wanted  to  teach  Asvatthama,  his    son,    certain 
special  things,  and  he  began  sending  all  his  disciples  to 
fetch  water.  Asvatthama  used  to  be  the    first  to  return 
with  the  water,   and  before  the  others  returned  Drona 
began   teaching  Asvatthama  the  special  lessons.  Arjuna 
came  to    understand  this  programme    and    he    began 
returning  with   water    along    with  Asvatthama.    Then 
the   guru  began    teaching   the    special    things    to    both 
Asvatthama  and   Arjuna.    Drona   instructed   the    cook 
not   to   serve    Arjuna    food     in    the  darkness.    While 
Arjuna    was  once  taking  his    food,  wind  blew  out    the 
burning    lamp,    and    Arjuna    alone    continued    eating. 
Because     of  constant  practice  Arjuna    was    quite    sure 
about  the   position  of  the    hand    and    the    mouth    in 
the  process  of  eating,   and  Arjuna   surmised    from    this 
that   archery    also   could    be  practised  in  darkness.  He 
began  practising   them.    The   guru  came  to  know  of  it, 
and    witnessing  Arjuna's  performance  praised  Arjuna  as 
a  unique  archer.  (Bharata,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  132). 

8 )  Ekalavya's  finger  was  cut.    Ekalavya,  son  of  Hiranya- 
dhanus,  King  of  the  Nisadas   (a  tribe  of  hunters,  forest- 
men)     approached  Drona  to  learn    the    science   of  the 
use  of  weapons.  Drona,  the  Brahmin,  refused  the  prayer 
of  this    prince  of  the  forest  tribe.  Ekalavya,  after  pros- 
trating   at  the    feet    of  Drona   returned  to  the  woods, 
made    an    image   of  Drona  with  earth  and  meditating 
upon  it  as  guru  began  practising  the  use  of  weapons. 
The  Kauravas   and    the  Pandavas  went  hunting  in  the 
forest.    Seeing  there  Ekalavya  with  his  matted  hair  and 
clad  in  deer    skin    the  hunting  dogs  began  barking  at 
him.     Ekalavya    shot  into    the  mouth  of  the  dog  seven 
arrows  at  one  and  the  same   moment.  With  the  arrows 
thrust  in  the  mouth  the  dogs  ran  back  to  the  Pandavas, 
and  they  found  out  the  culprit,  Ekalavya,  who  claimed 
himself  to  be  a  disciple  of  Drona.  Grief-stricken  at  this 
claim  Arjuna  hurried  up  to  Drona  and  said:  "You  had 
pronounced  me  to  be  your  foremost  disciple  without   an 
equal.   But,    today   Ekalavya,   another  disciple  of  yours 

has  relegated  me  to  the  second  place".  Thereupon 
Drona  went  and  saw  Ekalavya  in  the  forest.  Ekalavya, 
in  all  devotion  stood  up  and  saluted  the  guru.  And 
the  guru  said  as  follows  :  •"Oh  !  Ekalavya  if  thou 
art  my  disciple  give  me  the  daksina  (fee)  due  to  the 
guru,  and  I  desire  to  get  the  thumb  of  your  right  hand  as 
my  fee".  At  once  Ekalavya  cut  his  thumb  and  gave  it  to 
Drona.  Henceforth  Arjuna  became  Drona's  unequalled 
disciple.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  132). 

9)  Arjuna  got  Brahmatirastra.    When  once    Drona   and 
his  disciples  were  bathing  in  the  river  Gariga,  a  whale 
caught    hold    of  the    leg   of  the  guru.  The    combined 
efforts    of  the  disciples  failed  to  extricate   the  leg  from 
the  grip  of  the  whale.  Ultimately  Arjuna  shot  an  arrow 
and   released    the  guru's    leg.     Greatly  pleased  at  this 
Drona  imparted  to  Arjuna  knowledge  about  Brahma- 
sirastra,  and  Arjuna    was  enjoined  not  to  use  the  astra 
against  men,    but    to    use   it   only   when    confronting 
higher  beings  than  men.  [Bharata    ( Malayalam) ,    Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  133]. 

10)  Competition  in  arms.  When  the  training  of  the  princes 
was  almost  over  Dhrtarastra  decided  to  have  a  rehear- 
sal of  their  attainments,  and  the  scene  for  it    also  was 
set.    The    princes  with  bows  and  arrows   appeared  on 
the  scene.  Yudhisthira  and  others  first  exhibited  their 
skill  in  shooting  arrows  in  the  order  of  their  seniority. 
Every    scene   was  explained  to    Dhi'tarastra  by  Vidura 
and    to    Gandhari    by      Sanjaya.     Duryodhana    and 
Bhima    clashed  with    each  other.  Asvatthama  pacified 
them    and  kept    them   apart.  And,    then  Arjuna   and 
Kama  appeared  on  the  scene,  and  the    onlookers  dec- 
lared   them    to    be   equal   in    skill   in  archery.  When 
their    shooting  exhibition  was   over,  Kama  who    got 
angry   again   rushed  to    the    stage.    Arjuna    also    got 
ready.    Arjuna    challenged   Kama's  eligibility  on  the 
ground   that  he  was  low-born  and  not  a  Ksatriya.    At 
once  Duryodhana  proclaimed  him  as  the  King  of  Aiiga. 
Though    this  pacified    the    scene,  this  competition  in 
archery  served  much  to  make   the  Kauravas    and    the 
Pandavas  the  bitterest  of  enemies.    (M.B.,  Adi    Parva, 
Chapters,  136,  137). 

1 1 )  Arjuna's  gurudakfina  (Offering  of  fee  to  the  preceptor) . 
At  the  starting  of  training  the  princes  Drona  told  them: 
"I  have  one  thing    in   mind,  and  you   must  do  it  for 
me   when    you  have  completed  the  course  of  training. 
All  the  disciples  except  Arjuna  kept  silent  at  this,  but 
Arjuna    promised    to   fulfil    the    guru's    wish    at    the 
proper  time 

The  training  was  over,  and  it  was  time  for  gurudaksina. 
Drona  asked  to  be  brought  bound  before  him  Drupada, 
King  of  Pancala.  (For  Drona's  enmity  towards  Dru- 
pada see  Drupada) .  Thereupon  the  Pandavas  marched 
to  Pancala,  and  in  a  fierce  battle  Arjuna  defeated 
Drupada.  Though  Bhima  tried  to  kill  Drupada  Arjuna 
did  not  permit  it,  but  took  him  bound  to  Drona. 
This  ended  Drona's  hatred  towards  Drupada,  who 
now  gifted  half  his  kingdom  to  Drona.  Drona  was 
very  much  pleased  with  Arjuna  for  the  above  act, 
and  advised  him  to  fight  even  him  (Drona)  if  the 
latter  opposed  him  (Arjuna) .  To  this  Arjuna  replied 
'Yes'.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  139,  Verse  14) .  With 
this  promise  to  fight  even  the  guru  in  case  the  guru 
attacked  him  Arjuna  became  the  most  reputed  archer 
in  Bharata. 




12)  Jealousy  of  Dhrtardstra.  After  the  gurudaksina  Arjuna 
marched    against    the  neigh  curing   kingdom.   He  de- 
ir.ued  very  easily  in  war  the  King  of  Yavana  and    the 
Kings  Sauvira,  Yipula  and  Sumitia.  These   victories  of 
Arjuna  made  the  Kauravas  very    anxious;   Dhrtarastra 
brooded  over  it.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  138,  Verses 
20-23) . 

13)  Escape  from  the  waxen  palace.     Duryodhana    made 
up   his    mind  to   destroy    the    Pandavas   somehow   or 
other.  He  got  the  Pandavas  to  shift  their    residence    to 
a  palace  made  of  wax  at  Varanavata.  and  one  year  after 
this  the  palace  was  set  fire  to.    The    Pandavas    escaped 
death    by  fire  through  a  tunnel  and  entered  the  forest, 
the  next  day.  (See  Arakkillam). 

14)  Arjuna  on  the  banks  of  river  The  Pandavas  walk- 
ed much  through  the  terrible  forest,  and  after  midnight 
reached  the  banks  of  the  Gaiiga.  At  that  time  Arhgara- 
parna    (Citraratha),    the    Gandharva    was     enjoying 
his    time  in  the  river    with  some    Apsara  women.  The 
presence  of  men  at  the  scene,  the  Gandharva  did    not 
relish.  Arjuna  and  the   Gandharva    crossed    in   words, 
which  led  to  a  duel.  In  the  duel  the    Gandharva    was 
defeated.   As  the   wife  of   the  Gandharva  prayed  with 
tears  in  her    eyes   Arjuna    spared    him   his    life.    The 
grateful  Gandharva  told  the  Pandavas  many  interesting 
stories.  He  also    made  a  present  of  divine  horses  and 
imparted  to  them  the  esoteric  knowledge  called  Caksusl- 
vidya.    The  Gandhar\  a  finally  told  the  Pandavas    that 
they  were  attacked  because  they  came  without  Agni  and 
Ahuti  in  their  front.    He  also  explained  this  fact  that 
Arjuna  could  subjugate  him  on  account  of  his  (Arjuna' s) 
genuine  celibacy.      (See  Citraratha) . 

15)  Pdtcalisvayamvara.       Citraratha,    during    his    talks 
with  the     andavas  had  pointed  out  to  them  the  need  to 
have  a  priest    to   lead  and   guide  them  in  all  matters, 
and   accordingly   they  visited  Dhaumyasrama  and  ins- 
talled the  Maharsi  (Dhaumya)  as  their  priest. 

And,  meantime,  seeing  thousands  of  people  on  their  way 
to  attend  the  Svayarhvara  (marriage  by  open  choice 
of  husband  by  the  girl)  of  Krsna  (Pancali)  daughter 
of  the  King  of  I  ancala,  the  Pandavas  also  followed  the 
crowd.  Veda  Vyasa,  whom  the  Pandavas  met  on  their 
way  blessed  them.  King  Drupada  wished  to  give  his 
daughter  Krsna  in  marriage  to  Arjuna.  The  news  that 
the  nda  as  were  burned  to  death  in  the  palace  of 
wax  grieved  Drupada.  Yet  he  had  made  arrangements  for 
a  trial  of  strength  by  Heroes  at  the  Svayarhvara.  A 
tremendous  bow  was  got  ready  and  installed  on  the 
ground,  and  a  machine  constructed  which  was  kept 
suspended  in  the  air.  The  target  was  placed  inside 
the  machine.  And  then  Drupada  spoke  thus:  "My 
daughter  shall  be  married  to  him  who  will  bend  the 
bow  and  with  the  first  arrow  hit  the  target  placed 
inside  the  machine".  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  155, 
Verse  11).  Great  warriors  like  Duryodhana,  Karna, 
SiSupala,  Simsumara  took  their  seats  in  the  marriage 
hall.  All  the  kings  failed  even  to  lift  the  bow  up.  Ulti- 
mately Arjuna  lifted  the  bow  and  hit  the  target  very 
easily.  '  ancali  put  the  wedding  garland  on  Arjuna's 
neck.  When  the  Pandavas  returned  to  their  mother 
with  Pari cali  m  tne  evening  the  mother  from  inside  her 
room  said:  "What  you  have  got  today,  my  sons,  you 
enjoy  among  yourselves."  KuntI  said  this  under  the 
impression  that  what  her  sons  had  got  was  some 
Bhiksa.  At  any  rate,  in  obedience  to  the  above  injunc- 

tion of  the  mother  Pancali  became  wife  to  the  five 
Pandavas.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapters  190,  191). 
16)  Arjuna  at  Indraprastha.  The  Svayarhvara  of  Pancali 
broadcast  news  about  the  whereabouts  of  the  Pandavas. 
Dhrtarastra  brought  them  back  to  Indraprastha,  and 
installed  them  in  a  new  palace  built  at  the  place  called 
Khandavaprastha.  (Indraprastha) .  Dharmaputra  ruled 
a  part  of  the  country  with  Indraprastha  as  capital. 
Narada  went  there  once  and  advised  the  Pandavas  to 
guard  themselves  against  mutual  quarrels  as  the  five  of 
them  claimed  one  and  the  same  woman  as  wife.  Thence- 
forth it  was  set  forth  that  Pancali  would  live  with  each 
husband  in  turn  for  one  year.  It  was  also  settled  that 
during  a  particular  year  if  any  other  husband  than  the 
one  whose  turn  it  was  to  live  with  IMncali  saw  her  the 
intruder  was  to  go  on  a  pilgrimage  for  one  year. 
Once  a  brahmin  came  to  the  palace  complaining  that 
his  cows  were  stolen  by  thieves,  and  Arjuna  promised  to 
help  him.  Arjuna  did  so  without  remembering  that  all 
his  weapons  were  stored  inDharmaputra's  palace.  That 
year  Pancali  was  living  with  Dharmaputra.  Forgetting 
the  fact  Arjuna  went  to  Dharmaputra's  palace,  got  his 
weapons  and  helped  the  brahmin.  For  thus  breaking 
the  rule  Arjuna  left  his  palace  on  a  pilgrimage  for  one 

17A)  Arjuna  married  Ulupikd  and  Citrangada.  Arjuna 
with  his  bow  and  arrows  went  into  the  forest.  Many 
brahmins  followed  him.  Arjuna  reached  the  banks  of 
Gaiiga  and  entered  the  waters  for  a  bath.  Here  Arjuna 
was  attracted  by  Ulupika,  daughter  of  the  Naga  King 
and  he  married  her.  A  son  was  born  to  them  called  Ira- 
van.  After  visiting  places  likeAgastyavatam,  Vasisthagiri 
Arjuna  reached  Manalur.  He  married  Citrangada, 
daughter  of  Citrangada,  King  of  Manalur.  After  a  stay 
of  three  months  there  he  went  southwards.  Citrangada 
gave  birth  to  a  son  named  Babhruvahana' 
17B  )  The  mark  on  Arjuna's  flag  is  Hanumdn,  and  the 
following  story  is  attached  to  it.  Arjuna,  once  during  a 
tour  of  the  country  was  much  surprised  to  see  the  Dam 
constructed  by  Sri  Rama  from  Ramesvara  to  Lanka. 
He  also  felt  that  it  was  not  at  all  proper  on  the  part 
of  Sri  Rama  to  have  sought  the  help  of  monkeys  to 
construct  the  dam.  Sri  Rama  could  have  made  a  dam 
with  arrows.  Arjuna  put  this  question  to  a  great 
scholar  (Pandit)  who  was  sitting  nearby  reading  the 
Ramayana.  Neither  the  Pandit  nor  the  other  brahmins 
gathered  there  could  give  a  convincing  answer  to  Ar- 
juna's doubts.  Then  a  monkey  child  went  up  to  Arjuna 
and  told  him  with  pride  that  a  dam  made  of  arrows 
would  have  broken  when  the  monkeys  walked  on  it. 
Arjuna  said  then,  "no,  no,  no  monkey  will  be  able  to 
break  the  dam  built  with  Rama's  arrows;  which  monkey 
will  break  a  dam  of  arrows  made  even  by  me  ?"  And, 
a  debate  began  about  the  subject.  The  monkey  and 
Arjuna  agreed  to  a  bet  that  if  a  monkey  broke  the  dam 
made  by  Arjuna  he  would  end  his  life  by  jumping  into 
fire,  and  if  the  monkey  could  not  break  the  dam  it 
would  for  ever  be  Arjuna's  slave.  Arjuna  constructed 
a  dam  with  arrows.  And,  as  soon  as  the  monkey  set 
foot  on  it  it  was  broken.  Arjuna  tried  again.  Though 
now  it  caused  some  efforts  on  the  part  of  the  monkey 
the  dam  broke  this  time  also.  Arjuna  was  thus  left  with 
no  alternative  but  to  die  by  jumping  into  fire  and  a 
fire  was  accordingly  lit.  Before  Arjuna  jumped  into  the 
fire  a  brahmin  boy,  who  was  bathing  in  the  river  ran 




upto  Arjuna  and  told  him  that  his  attempt  at  self 
annihilation  was  not  justified  as  the  bet  was  made  with- 
out an  arbiter.  When  Arjuna  who  was  wedded  so 
much  to  truth  brushed  aside  this  argument  and  got 
ready  to  end  his  life  the  boy  said  :  "If  you  are  so  very 
insistent  about  it  you  (Arjuna  and  the  monkey)  com- 
pete once  again  with  me  as  arbiter.  This  suggestion  of 
the  boy  was  accepted.  The  monkey  child  tried  its  best 
to  break  the  dam,  but  it  failed.  It  developed  its  body 
to  the  size  of  a  mountain  and  jumped  on  the  dam. 
Even  then  it  did  not  break.  Then  he  ran  up  to  the  boy 
who  was  acting  as  arbiter  and  prostrated  at  his  feet 
crying  'Ramacandra'.  At  the  same  moment  Aijuna 
also  prostrated  before  the  boy  crying  'Sri  Krsna,  slave 
to  devotees'.  The  boy  asked  both  of  them  to  get  up, 
and  after  admonishing  them  for  their  conceit  gave  them 
good  advice.  He  also  asked  the  monkey  child  to  keep 
his  word  by  remaining  as  the  emblem  of  Arjuna's  flag. 
(The  monkey  boy  was  actually  Hanuman  and  the 
brahmin  boy  Sri  Krsna). 

1 7  C )  Arjuna  married  Subhadrd.  Arjuna  went  to  the  holy 
place  called  Saubhadratlrtha  and  redeemed  the  woman 
named  Varga  from  the  curse  she  was  labouring  under. 
(See  Varga) .  Arjuna  continued  his  journey  and  reached 
Gokarna  and  Prabhasa  tirtha,  where  he  met  Gada, 
brother  of  Sri  Krsna.  Gada  described  to  Arjuna  the 
great  beauty  of  his  sister,  Subhadra.  Arjuna  went  to 
Dvaraka  and  paid  his  respects  to  Sri  Kt'sna.  A  few  days 
later  the  yadavas  celebrated  a  great  festival  at  mount 
Raivataka.  Aijuna  went  there  disguised  as  a  Sannyasin 
and  forcibly  took  away  Subhadra  with  him  with  the 
permission  of  Sri  Krsna.  Though  the  yadavas  got  ready 
for  a  fight  they  were  ultimately  pacified,  and  Subhadra 
was  married  to  Arjuna.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter, 

17D)  Brahmin  boy  saved.  When  once  Arjuna  was  in 
Dvaraka  with  Sri  Krsna  a  brahmin  appeared  on  the 
scene  lamenting  that  his  child  died  as  soon  as  it  was 
born.  Nobody  paid  any  heed  to  this,  and  then  Arjuna 
rose  up  and  assured  protection  to  the  next  child  to  be 
born  to  the  brahmin  and  asked  him  to  return  home  in 
peace.  Arjuna  also  vowed  that  he  would  end  his  life 
by  jumping  into  fire  if  he  failed  to  protect  the  next 
child  of  the  brahmin. 

As  the  time  for  the  delivery  of  his  wife  approached  the 
brahmin  took  Arjuna  home.  Arjuna  made  the  house 
secure  by  making  an  enclosure  with  his  arrows.  Yet 
the  child  died;  not  only  that,  at  the  time  of  birth  it- 
self its  body  disappeared.  And.  the  brahmin  heaped 
insults  on  Arjuna,  who  looked  very  foolish.  Rendered 
thus  an  object  of  ridicule  Arjuna  began  to  make  a  fire 
for  him  to  jump  into.  At  this  Sri  Krsna  appeared  be- 
fore Arjuna  and  prevented  him  from  jumping  into  fire. 
And  then  both  Krsna  and  Arjuna  went  to  Visnuloka 
and  submitted  the  case  of  the  brahmin  to  him.  Visnu 
told  them  :  "Oh  !  Krsna  and  Arjuna,  it  was  I  who  took 
away  the  brahmin  boys  for  the  pleasure  of  seeing  you 
both  here.  You  may  immediately  return  with  the  brah- 
min boys.  And,  Krsna  and  Arjuna  returned  with  the 
boys  to  the  brahmin,  who  now  felt  very  happy. 
(Bhagavata,  Dasama  Skandha;  Chapter  89) . 
17E)  Burning  of  Khandava  forest.  While  Krsna  and  Arjuna 
were  spending  their  days  on  the  banks  of  river  Yamuna 
in  the  summer  season  Agni  Bhagavan  (the  fire-god) 
requested  them  to  give  the  Khandava  forest  as  food  to 

him.  (See  Khandavadaha ) .  Arjuna  agreed  to  oblige 
Agni  Bhagavan,  who  presented  to  Arjuna  the  bow 
called  Gandlva,  a  white  horse  and  many  other  power- 
ful arrows.  When  Agni  began  burning  ihe  forest,  Indra 
sent  a  heavy  shower  of  rain.  By  creating  a  tent  with 
arrows  Arjuna  saved  the  forest  from  the  rain.  Arjuna 
killed  Taksaka's  wife,  cursed  the  called  Asvasena 
and  saved  Maya,  the  architect  of  the  Asuras  who  was 
put  up  in  the  forest.  Indra  was  pleased  and  gifted  many 
divine  arrows  to  Arjuna.  Maya  gave  the  famous  conch, 
Devadattam  to  Arjuna.  By  now  the  one  year  of  the 
pilgrimage  of  Arjuna  was  over  and  he  returned  to 
Indraprastha.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapters  233-239). 
17P)  Fight  between  Arjuna  and  Sri  Krfna.  (See  Galava, 
para  4) . 

18)  Again    to   the  forest.     Maya,  who  escaped  death  in 
Khandava  forest,  in  his  great  gratitude,  went  to  Indra- 
prastha, and  with  the  permission  of  Dharmaputra  built 
for  the   Pandavas    an    exceptionally    beautiful   palace. 
And    then  the    Pandavas  made  the  conquest  of  all  the 
earth,  and  after  killing   enemy   kings  like  Jarasandha, 
the  Kimpurusas,  the  Hadakas,  Sisupala,  Kurundha  and 
Bhagadatta  returned  to    Idraprastha    and  performed 
the  Rajasuya  yajfla.    The  Kauravas  who  got  jealous  at 
this  went  on  a  visit  to  Indraprastha.  When  they  enter- 
ed the  palace  built  by  Maya  they  were  put  into  many 
a  ludicrous    situation.    (See    Sabhaprave:sa).   Insulted 
and    humiliated    they    returned    to   Hastinapura    and 
challenged  the  Pandavas  to  a  game  of  dice,  and  in  the 
game    the   Pandavas  lost    not  only  their  kingdom  and 
other    riches,  but    Pancall  as  well.  Dussasana  dragged 
Pancall  and   stripped    her   of  her  clothes  in  the  royal 
assembly  and  thus  mercilessly  insulted    her.  According 
to  the  terms  and  condition  agreed  to  with  reference  to 
the  game  of  dice,  the    Pandavas  had  to  lead  forest  life 
for  twelve   years  and    live  for  one  year  incognito.  The 
Pandavas    again  started   for   the  forest.  (M.B.,  Sabha 
Parva) . 

19)  Pandavas  in  Kamyaka  forest.     A  number  of  brahmins 
also  accompanied  the  Pandavas  to  the  forest.  The  noble 
brahmin,    Saunaka   consoled    the    aggrieved  Dharma- 
putra in    the    Dvaitavana.  Dharmaputra  felt    worried 
that  he  could  not  feed  the  brahmins  who  accompanied 
him  into    the  forest.  Pancall  prayed  to    the  Sun-God, 
and  he  gave  the  Aksayapatra  to  her.  (See  Aksyapatra) . 
And,  after  this  the  Pandavas,  along  with  the  brahmins, 
entered  the    Kamyaka  forest.    (M.B.,   Aranya    Parva, 
Chapter  36) . 

20)  Arjuna   secured  divine  arrows.     Dharmaputra   asked 
Arjuna  to  do  tapas  in  the  Himalayas  and    thus  secure 
divine  arrows.  Accordingly  Arjuna  went  south  and  saw 
Indra    in  the    Indraklla    mountain.    Indra    gave  him 
boons.    There    Arjuna    killed    Mukasura.    And,    then 
Arjuna  went  to  Mount  Kailasa  and  prayerfully   concen- 
trated his  mind  on  Siva.  Siva  appeared  in  the  guise  of 
a  forest  dweller.    (See  Fa.supata.stra).  Afte*  that  he  got 
the  Dandastra  from  Yama,  Pasastra  from  Varuna  and 
Antardhanastra  from     Kubera.    (M.B.,    Vana   Parva, 
Chapters  37-41). 

21)  Arjuna  in  Indraloka.     Indra,  who  was  so  very  pleas- 
ed that  Arjuna  got  so  many  divine    arrows  deputed  his 
charioteer,  Matali,    to  bring  Arjuna  to  Devaloka,  and 
at  Devaloka  he  learned  more  about  archery  and  music. 
The  Apsara  women   forgot    themselves  when  they  saw 
the  exceptionally  handsome   Arjuna.  Urvasi,  mad  with 




love,  sent  her  messenger  Citrasena  to  Indra.  Being  told 
about  Urvaii's  love  Arjuna  closed  both  his  ears  with 
hands,  and  reminded  the  messenger  of  UrvasTs  mater- 
nal position  with  reference  to  him.  UrvasI  cursed  and 
turned  Arjuna  into  an  eunuch.  Indra  consoled  Arjuna 
by  assuring  him  that  Urvasi's  curse  will  turn  out  to  be 
of  great  benefit  to  him.  Afterwards  Arjuna  stayed  in 
Devaloka  for  a  few  days  with  Citrasena,  and  during 
the  period  he  killed  Nivatakavaca  and  Kalakeya. 
Arjuna  became  a  friend  of  Maharsi  Lomasa,  who  had 
gone  to  Devaloka  to  see  Indra.  Promising  Arjuna  that 
he  would  protect  Dharmaputra  Lomasa  returned  to  the 
earth.  Arjuna  left  the  Kiimyaka  forest  and  returned  to 
his  brothers  after  an  absence  for  five  years.  He  met  the 
brothers  at  Mount  Gandhamadana.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva, 
Chapters  42-47) . 

22)  Procession.  At  last  a  witty  and  humorous  brahmin 
went  to  Dhrtarastra  and  dilated  upon  the  hardships 
being  suffered  by  the  Pandavas,  and  Duryodhana  and 
others  were  extremely  pleased  and  happy  to  hear  it. 
Yet,  they  shed  crocodile  tears.  But,  Duryodhana  was 
in  a  mighty  hurry  to  see  with  his  own  eyes  the  pitiable 
plight  of  the  Pandavas.  On  the  pretext  of  going  out  for 
hunting  Duryodhana  and  others  with  the  permission  of 
Dhrtarastra,  started  for  the  forest  with  a  number  of 
attendants.  8,000  chariots,  30,000  elephants,  thousands 
of  infantry  soldiers,  9,000  horses,  merchants,  ornaments, 
courtesans  and  thousands  of  hunters  formed  this  pro- 
cession into  the  forest.  Just  like  roaring  winds  during 
the  rainy  season  the  procession  caused  thunderous  noise. 
Duryodhana  approached  the  pool  in  the  Dvaita  forest 
and  waited  at  a  distance.  (M.B.,  Aranya  Parva,  Chap- 
ter 239,  Verses  25-29). 

Duryodhana  and  attendants  put  up   tents  in  the  forest. 
The  Gandharvas  obstructed    Duryodhana,  and  he  and 
the  Gandharva    called   Citrasena    clashed  with    each 
other.  Duryodhana  was  made  a  prisoner.    Arjuna  came 
on  the  scene  and  released  him.    And,    thus    humiliated 
Duryodhana  returned  to  Hastinapura  with    the    atten- 
dants. (M.B.,  Aranya  Parva,  Chapters  239-253). 
23)   Arjuna   lost    consciousness.     While    once  Pancall  was 
alone  King  Jayadratha  forcibly    took  her  away.  Within 
seconds  the  Pandavas  confronted  Jayadratha  and  regain- 
ed Pancall.  Jayadratha  and   his    men  were   killed.  The 
Pandavas,  who  were  very    weary  and    tired  walking  in 
the  forest  felt  extremely  thirsty.  Nakula,  at  the  instance 
of  Dharmaputra  climbed  a  tree  and  looked  around  and 
sighted  a  pool  of  clear  water.  When  Nakula  went  to  the 
pool  and  began  to  draw  water  a  voice  from  above  was 
heard  saying  as  follows  :     "Do  not  be  so  very  daring. 
This  is  my   ancestral   wealth.    If  you  answer  my  ques- 
tions you  may  not    only   drink  the   water  but  also  take 
some  with  you".  Without  paying  any  heed  to  this  warn- 
ing Nakula  drank  water  from   the  pool,  and  lo  !  he  fell 
down  unconscious  immediately.  Sahadeva  who  went  to 
the  pool  in  search  of  Nakula  and    drank  water  from  the 
pool    also    met    with    the  same  fate  as  Nakula.  Arjuna 
and    Bhima    also  had  the  same  fate  at  the  pool.  Lastly 
Dharmaputra  went  to  the  pool  and  understanding  what 
happened  to  his  brothers  requested  permission  to  drink 
water.  At  once  a  Yaksa  appeared  and  brought  the  bro- 
thers of  Dharmaputra    back  to  consciousness.    In  fact, 
the  Yaksa  was  none  other  than  Yamadharmadeva.  (For 
questions  and  answers  of  the  Yaksa  see  Dharmaputra.) 
(M.B.,  Aranya  Parva,    Chapters  312-315). 

24)  Life  incognito.     Now  the    twelve    years  of  forest  life 
being  over  the  Pandavas  decided  to  spend  the  one  year 
of  life  incognito  in  the  Virata  palace.  Arjuna  disguised 
himself  and  deposited    his  clothes    and  weapons  in  the 
hollow  of  a  Sami  tree  in  the  forest.  And  the  Pandavas 
in  various  disguises  reached    the  Virata    palace.  They 
assumed  false    names  :  Dharmaputra  as  Karika,  Bhima 
as  Valala,    Arjuna  as  Brhannala,  Nakula  as  Granthika 
and  Sahadeva  as  Aristanemi  and  Draupadi  as  Malinl. 
When   the   life  incognito  of  the  Pandavas  for  one  year 
was   about    to   expire  a  rumour  reached    the  Kauravas 
that  the  Pandavas  were  at  the    Virata  capital,  and  the 
Kauravas  thought  that  the  Pandavas  will  appear  on  the 
scene  if  a  war    was  fought   against  King    Virata.  The 
Kauravas,  with    this    object  in  view,  lifted  the  cows  of 
Virata  and  that  led  to  war.  Uttara,  the  prince  of  Viraja 
boasted    that    he    would  fight  provided  he  had  a  good 
charioteer.  Brhannala    (Arjuna)    agreed  to  act  as  such 
and    they    started  for  the    warfield.  At  the  sight  of  the 
massive  army  of  the  Kauravas  Uttara   got   frightened 
and    tried   to  run   away   from  the  field.  But  Brhannala 
tightly  bound    Uttara  to  the  chariot,  drove  it  very  fast 
to    the    forest,    took  back  from   the  hollow  of  the  Sami 
tree    his   weapons  and  returned  to  the  battle-field.  The 
Kauravas  were  absolutely  defeated  in  the  war  and  they 
took  to  their  heels.  They  understood  that  the  very  clever 
and  terrible  warrior  in  disguise  was  Arjuna  himself.  But, 
by  the  time  the   period  of    the  Pandavas  life   incognito 
was  over.  The  king  of  Virata,    greatly  pleased  over  this 
victory  in  war  gave  his  daughter,  Uttara  in  marriage  to 
Abhimanyu,  son  of  Arjuna.  (M.B.,  Virata  Parva). 

25)  Preparations  for   war.     After    the  forest  life  and  life 
incognito  the  Pandavas  returned.    The  Kauravas  refus- 
ed to  give  them  half  the  Kingdom.  Sri  Krsna,  on  behalf 
of  the  Pandavas,  implored  that  half  the  kingdom  or  five 
districts  or  five  nouses  or  at  least  one  house  be  given  to 
them.  But.  the  Kauravas  took   the    stand  that  not  even 
an  iota  of  land   would  be  given  to  the  Pandavas.  And, 
war  was  perforce    decided   upon.    Duryodhana  went  to 
Krsna  at  Dvaraka  to  request  for  support  in  war.  Krsna, 
who  favoured  the  Pandavas  lay  in   false  sleep  as  he  did 
not  want  to  fight  against  them.    Duryodhana  sat  at  the 
head  of  Krsna.  Arjuna,  who    came  after  some  tune  sat 
at    the    feet    of  Krsna    and   remained    there  standing. 
Awakening  from  sleep,  it  was  Arjuna  whom  Kysna  saw 
first.  After  the  greetings  were  over   with  Arjuna,  Krsna 
saw  Duryodhana  also.  Between  Krsna  without  any  arms 
and  the   armed   forces  of  Krsna,  Arjuna    chose   Ki'sna 
and  Duryodhana  his  armed  forces  to   help   each  side  in 
the  impending  war.  ( Udyoga  Parva) . 

26)  War.  Both  the  Parties  were  encamped  in  Kuruk- 
setra  ready  for  war.  Sri  Krsna  acted  as  Charioteer  to 
Arjuna.  He  stopped  the  chariot  in  between  the  opposing 
armies.  Arjuna  felt  deep  anguish  to  find  his  own  people 
arrayed  on  the  opposite  side  for  war.  Reluctant  to  kill 
relations,  elders,  friends  and  preceptors  Arjuna  laid 
down  his  arms  in  the  chariot.  Then  did  Ki'siia  instruct 
him  in  Karmayoga  (the  philosophy  of  action).  That 
instruction  and  advice  of  Kfsna  is  the  world-famous 
Bhagavad  Glta.  The  Glta  cleared  off  Arjuna's  illusions 
and  he  praised  the  Lord,  Sri  Krsna,  who  revealed  his 
all  comprehensive  form  (Visvarupa)  to  Arjuna. 
On  the  first  day  of  the  war  Arjuna  fought  a  duel  with 
Blrisma,  and  the  second  day  he  fought  the  Kaurava 
forces  with  exceptional  prowess.  And  then  Arjuna  pre- 




vented  Krsna  from  killing  Bhisma.  But,  the  Kaurava 
army  faced  defeat  that  day.  On  the  third  day  Arjuna 
defeated  Bhisma,  Asvatthama,  Trigartta,  Bhagadatta 
and  others.  Thereupon  a  really  fierce  fight  began.  The 
war  lasted  for  18  days.  The  important  incidents  during 
the  18  days  can  be  summarised  as  follows  : — 

( 1 )  Fierce  fight  between  Arjuna  and  Bhisma. 

(2)  Fight  between  Arjuna  and  Asvatthama. 

(3)  Arjuna  destroyed  the  Kaurava  army. 

(4)  Iravan,  son  of  Arjuna,  was  killed. 

(5)  Arjuna  fought  against  Drona  and  SuSarma. 

(6)  Took  the  vow  to  kill  Bhisma. 

(7)  Sikhandi  prompted  to  kill  Bhisma. 

(8 )  On  the  appearance  of  Sikharidi  the  Kaurava  army, 
took  fright  and  fled  in  great  disarray. 

(9)  Arjuna  fought  a  duel  with  Dussasana. 

(10)  Duel  with  Bhagadatta. 

(11)  Duel  again  with  Bhisma. 

(12)  Bhisma  fainted  and  fell  on  the  ground. 

(13)  Duel  again  with  Dussasana. 

(14)  With    Sikhandi    in    the   front    made  an  attack  on 

(15)  Arjuna  discharged  three  arrows  to  serve  as  pillow 
to  Bhisma  who,    dislodged   from  the    chariot,   was 
lying  on  a  bed  of  arrows. 

(16)  Cool  water   sprinkled  on  the   face  of  Bhisma   with 
the  aid  of  divine  arrows. 

(17)  Fought  against  Drona  and  defeated  his  forces. 

(18)  Satyajit  deputed   to   remain  with  Dharmaputra  to 
help  him. 

(19)  Sudhanva  killed. 

(20)  Again  fought  with  Bhagadatta. 

(21)  Supratlka,  the  elephant  of  Bhagadatta  killed. 

(22)  And  after  that,  Bhagadatta  also  killed. 

(23)  Vrsaka  and  Acala  killed  by  Arjuna. 
(24;   Sakuni  defeated. 

(25)  Arjuna  killed  the  three  brothers  of  Karna  and  con- 
fronted Kama. 

(26)  Abhimanyu,  son  of  Arjuna,  killed. 

(27)  Hearing  about  the  death  of  Abhimanyu,  Arjuna  fell 
down  unconscious. 

(28)  Awakened,  Arjuna  vowed  to  kill  Jayadratha. 

(29)  Arjuna  performed  Siva  Piija. 

(30)  Arjuna  dreamt  that  night  to  have  paid  homage  to 
Siva  along  with  Krsna    and   that   Siva  gave    him 
divine  arrows  like  Pasupata. 

(31)  Marched    forth   routing    the  elephant  regiment  of 

(32)  Routed  Dussasana  in  fight. 

(33)  Again    fought    Drona,      Kytavarml,    Srutayudha, 
Sudaksina,  King  of  Kamboja. 

(34)  Sudaksina  killed  in  fight. 

(35)  Srutayu,  Acyutayu,  Niyutiyu,  Ambastha    and  the 
Mlecchas'  army  killed. 

(36)  Vinda  and  Anuvinda  killed. 

(37)  Warfield   converted  into    a    house   of  arrows,  on 
account  of  the  great  collection  of  arrows. 

(38)  Arjuna  defeated  Duryodhana. 

(39)  Fought   the   nine  great    warriors    on  the  Kaurava 

(40)  Arjuna   cut    off  the    right  hand  of  Bhurisravas  at 
the  instance  of  Krsna. 

(41)  Cut  off  the  head  of  Jayadratha   with   arrows.  The 
head    and  the    arrows  were  thrown  on  the  lap   of 
Jayadratha's  father. 

(42)  Alambusa,  King  ofRaksasas  killed. 

(43)  Dandadhfira  killed  with  his  elephant. 

(44)  Arjuna  killed   the    six  brothers    of   Susarma,  viz., 
Satyasena,     Candrasena,    Mitrasena,     Srutanjaya; 
Sausruti  and  Mitradharma 

(45)  Difference  of  opinion  arose   between  Dharmaputra 
and  Arjuna  about  the    failure   to  kill   Karna,   and 
in  the  heat   of  excitement  Arjuna  called  his  elder 
brother  'thou'. 

(46)  Immediately   repenting  Arjuna  drew  sword  to   kill 
himself.    But,  regained  mental  peace   by    begging 
pardon  of  the  brother. 

(47)  Killed  Vi'sasena,  son  of  Karna, 

(48)  Karna  brought  down  Krsna's  crown   by  his   arrow 
resembling  the  face  of  the  serpent.  Enraged  at  this 
Arjuna  killed  Karna. 

(49)  Killed  Satyakarma,  Satyestha  and  others. 

(50)  After  bowing    to   Vyasa,  Arjuna  withdrew  arrow. 
(M.B.,  Bhisma,  Drona,  Karna,  Salya  and  Sauptika 

27)  After  the  war.  In  the  great  war  the  Kaurava  army, 
to  the  very  last  man,  was  annihilated.  The  Pandavas 
assembled  together.  Thoughts  about  the  future  came  up. 
Sri  Krsna  consoled  the  sorrowing  Dharmaputra.  As 
desired  by  Vyasa,  Ki'sna,  Dharmaputra  and  others 
returned  to  Hastinapura  and  took  up  the  reins  of 
governing  the  country,  and  the  idea  of  performing  an 
Aivamedha  Yaga  was  seriously  mooted.  A  King  named 
Marutta  agreed  to  give  money  needed  for  the  yajfia. 
Arjuna  defeated  all  enemy  kings.  (M.B.,  Santi  Parva). 

28)  Death    and   rebirth    of  Arjuna.     On   his    way    back 
after  digvijaya   Arjuna  was  killed  by  the  arrows  of  his 
son,   Babhruvahana.    Immediately  did  Ulupl,  Arjuna's 
wife  bring  back  to   life  her  husband  by  Mrtasanjlvanl 
mantra.    Then  Arjuna    questioned    Ulupl    about    the 
reason  for  his  son  killing  him,  and  also  as    to  how    she 
happened   to  be   present  at  the  time.  Ulupl   described 
the    story    of  a    curse    in    answer   to  Arjuna's  querry. 
(M.B.,  Asvamedha  Parva,  Chapter  79). 

29)  The  story  of  the  curse.     Ulupl  said  :  You   shall  not 
get   angry.  Yes,    all  is  for  the  best.  In  war   you   killed 
Bhisma  by   unrighteous    means,    viz.  with  the    help  of 
Sikhandi.  On  his  death,  the  Astavasus  and  Ganga  Devi 
cursed  you    with    hell.    I  told    about  this  curse  to  my 
father,   who  begged  the  Vasus  for  redemption,  and  they 
said  that  you  would  be  redeemed  from  the  curse  when 
your  son,   Babhruvahana,    killed    you.  Accordingly  he 
has  been  brought  here  to  kill  you. 

The  above  story  pleased  Arjuna.    (Asvamedha    Parva, 
Chapter  81). 

30)  Asvamedham.     Arjuna  again  defeated  Meghasandhi, 
the    King    of  Magadha,    Sakuniputra  and  others   and 
returned  to  Hastinapura,  where  the    Asvamedha  yajfia 
was  performed.    The  Yadava  dynasty  was  extinguished 
before    long.   Arjuna  did  all  the  rites  due  to  them    on 
death.  He  grieved  over  the    departure   of   Sri    Krsna. 
(Bhagavata,  Skandha  11,    Chapter  31).   And  then    he 
went  to  Indraprastha  with  the  consorts  of   Krsna.    On 
the  way  dacoits  overcame    Arjuna  and  snatched  away 
some  of  the  females.  Arjuna  felt  very  sad.    Then   Vyasa 
appeared  and   told  him  that  he    would   be  strong  and 
powerful  only  in  the  presence  of  Krsna.   (Agni  Parana, 
Chapter   15). 

31)  Pandavas' journey  to   the  other  world-     Now,  it    was 
time  for  the  Pandavas  to  journey  to    the  other  world. 



It  was  at  this  juncture  that  the  Yadava  dynasty  ended 
and  Sri  Krsna  was  killed,  and  some  of  Krsna's  con- 
sorts were  abducted.  Arjuna  could  not  save  them,  and 
they  jumped  into  the  river  and  died.  Arjuna,  who  lost 
all  his  power  began  the  great  journey  with  his  brothers. 
On  their  way  Agnideva  advised  him  to  deposit  reputed 
bow,  Gandlva  in  the  sea,  and  Arjuna  did  so.  (Maha- 
prasthana  Parva,  Chapter  1,  Verses  1-42).  The  Panda- 
vas  continued  their  journey,  Yudhisthira  leading  them. 
They  reached  the  Himalayas,  and  there  Pane  "ill  expir- 
ed. To  Bhima's  querry  as  to  why  Pancali  expired  first, 
Yudhisthira  replied  that  it  was  due  to  her  having  been 
more  partial  to  Arjuna.  The  others  continued  their 
journey  and  then  Sahadeva  died.  Yudhisthira  explain- 
ed that  Sahadeva  died  second  due  to  his  arrogance 
and  conceit.  And,  the  others  continued  going  forward. 
An  emaciated  dog  was  already  with  the  Piindavas 
during  their  journey.  Nakula  was  the  third  to  die,  and 
Yudhisthira  attributed  it  to  his  (Nakula)  extreme  con- 
ceit about  his  beauty.  And,  Arjuna's  death  next, 
Yudhisthira  said,  was  due  to  his  having  not  kept  his 
vow,  once  made,  to  kill  the  whole  lot  of  enemies  in  a 
day.  After  proceeding  a  short  distance  further  Bhima 
also  fell  dead,  and  Yudhisthira  thought  to  himself 
that  it  was  due  to  Bhima's  voracious  eating.  And,  then 
Devendra  came  in  his  chariot  of  gold  and  welcomed 
Yudhisthira  to  Svarga.  But,  he  refused  the  offer  saying 
that  he  would  not  do  go  alone,  leaving  his  brothers 
behind.  When  Indra  assured  him  that  his  brothers 
were  already  there,  in  Svarga,  Yudhisthira  got  into 
the  chariot  and  reached  Svarga,  and  he  was  elated  to 
find  his  brothers  there  happy  with  Pancali.  (Maha- 
prasthana  Parva  and  Svargarohana) . 

32)  The  meanings  of  the  word.  Ariuna. 

(1)  White. 



Avadatassito  gauro 

Valakso  dhavalo'rjunah 

Harinah  pandurah.  (Amarakosa) 

(2)  The  plant  called  virataru. 

Nadlsarjo  virataru- 

Rindradruh  kakubhor'rjunah.  (Do) 

(3)  Giass. 

Saspam  balatmarh  ghaso 

yavasam  trnarharjunam.  (Do) 

(4)  Indra. 

(Rgveda,  Chapter  1,  Anuvaka  7,  Sukta  112). 

33)  Synonyms  used  in  the  Mahabharata  of  Arjuna.  Aindri, 
Bharata,  Bhlmanuja,  Bhlmasenanuja,  Bibhatsu,  Brhan- 
nala,  Sakharnvgadhvaja,  Sakraja,  Sakranandana,  Sakra- 
sunu,     Sakratmaja,     S"akrasuta,    Svetasva,    Svetahaya, 
Svetavaha,  Devendratanaya,  Dhananjaya,  Gandlvabhrt, 
Gandlvadhanva,     Gandlvadhari,    Gandivi,    GudakeSa, 
Indrarupa,  Indrasuta,  Indratmaja,  Indravaraja,   Jaya, 
Jisnu,    Kapidhvaja,    Kapiketana,    Kapipravara,  Kapi- 
varadhvaja,     Kaunteya,     Kaurava,      Kauravasrestha, 
Kauravya,    Kiritamali,   Kauraveya,    Kirlfabhi't,    Kirl- 
tavan,      Kiriti,      Krsna,      KT-snasarathi,      Kuntlputra, 
Mahendrasunu,     Mahendratmaja,    Nara,     Pakasasani, 
Pandava,  Pandaveya,  Pandunandana,  Partha,  Paurava, 
Phalguna,    Prabhanjanasutanuja,  Savyasaci,    Tapatya, 
Tridasesvaratmaja,  Vanaradhvaja,  Vanaraketana,  Vana- 
raketu,  Vanaravaryaketana,  Vasavaja,  Vasavanandana, 
Vasavatmaja,  Vasavi,  Vijaya. 

34)  Origin  of  certain  words.     Towards  the    close    of  his 
life  incognito,  Arjuna  went   to    the   Sami  tree   to   take 
out   Gandlva    kept    in    its    hollow.      Uttara    also    was 
with  Arjuna.  Then  Arjuna  revealed  himself  to  Uttara, 
and  also  elaborated  the  meaning  of  his  various    names 
as  follows: — 

I  shall  tell  you  my  ten  names.  Arjuna,  Phalguna,  Jisnu, 
Kiriti,  Svetavahana,  Bhibhatsu,  Vijaya,  Krsna,  Savya- 
saci and  Dhananjaya I  am  called  Dhananjaya, 

because  even  after  having  conquered  all  the  lands  and 
amassed  wealth  I  stand  in  the  centre  of  righteousness 
...  .1  am  called  Vijaya  because  in  fights  with  haughty 

opponents  I  always  succeed I  am  called  Svetavahana 

because  white  horses  are  harnessed  in  war  to  my  chariot 
decked  with  golden  ornaments I  am  called  Phal- 
guna because  I  was  born  in  the  month  of  Phalguna  and 
under  the  star,  Phalguna. ..  .1  am  kinti  because  during 
my  fight  with  the  Daityas  I  put  on  my  head  crown 
glowing  as  Sun. . .  I  am  called  Bibhatsu  by  men  and 
Devas  because  I  never  resort  to  revolting  means  during 
war..  .Devas  and  men  call  me  Savyasaci  because  both 
my  hands  are  adept  in  using  the  bow,  Gandlva.... I 
am  Arjuna  because,  in  the  world  people  are  rare  who 
possess  such  fair  colour  as  I  do,  and  moreover  I  do 
only  white  (just  and  ethical)  acts. . .  .1  am  called  Jisnu, 
because  I  am  unassailable  and  unconquerable,  and  I 
subjugate  and  conquer,  and  also  because  I  am  the  son  of 
Indra. .  .My  father  gave  me  the  tenth  name  of  Krsna 
because  I  was  very  attractive  (Krsna  =  attractive). 
[Mahabharata  (Malayalam)  ]. 

35)  Wives  of  Arjuna. 

(1)  Pancali  (2)  Ulupi    (3)    Citrarigada  (4)  Subhadra. 

36)  Sons  of  Arjuna.     Srtakiiiti,  Iravan,  Babhruvahana, 

ARJUNA  II.     A  son  of  Emperor,  Nimi. 

One  Arjuna,  son  of  emperor  Nimi,  got  philosophical 
advice  from  a  Muni  named  Asita  (Brahmandapurana, 
Chapter  47) . 

ARJUNA  III.     (See  Karttaviryarjuna) . 

ARJUNA  IV.  A  member  of  Yama's  assembly.  The 
other  members  are  :  Kapotaroma,  Trnaka,  Sahadeva, 
Visva,  SasVa,  Krlasva,  Sasabindu  and  MahlsVara. 
(M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  8,  Verse  17). 

ARJUNABHIGAMANAPARVA.  A  sub  Parva  in  Maha- 
bharata. (See  Mahabharata). 

ARJUNAKA.  A  hunter.  Dharmaputra  was  called  to  his 
side  by  Bhlsma  his  body  torn  by  arrows  in  fight  and  he 
felt  very  sad  and  sorry  to  see  Bhisma  in  that  state.  To 
console  Dharmaputra  Bhlsma  related  a  story  and  this 
hunter  was  one  of  the  characters  in  the  story.  The  story 
may  be  summarised  as  follows : — 

Once,  the  son  of  an  old  Brahmin  woman  Gautami, 
died  on  account  of  snake-bite.  A  hunter  caught  and 
brought  before  Gautami  the  snake.  His  object  was  to 
kill  it  immediately.  But  the  serpent  proved  its  innocence 
by  pleading  that  it  bit  the  boy  impelled  and  prompted 
by  Death.  At  once  death  (mrtyu)  appeared  on  the 
scene  and  explained  that  it  was  prompted  by  the  God 
of  Death.  And,  it  was  the  child  who  was  responsible  for 
the  cause  of  death,  and  Gautami  was  the  cause  for  the 
birth  of  the  child.  Ultimately  Gautami  herself  assumed 
responsibility  for  the  sin.  Bhlsma  consoled  Dharma- 
putra by  telling  that  as  in  the  case  of  Gautami  in 
the  story,  the  cause  for  every  effect  was  the  chain 
of  Karma.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  1). 


ARJUNAVANAVASAPARVA.  A  sub  parva  in  Maha- 
bharata.  (See  Mahabharata)  . 

ARKKA  I.     A  synonym  of  the  Sun.  (See  SURYA) . 

ARKKA  II.  A  king  of  olden  days.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  1,  Verse  236). 

ARKKA  III.  The  royal^  sage  Rsika  was  Arkka,  the 
Asura,  reborn.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  67,  Verses 
32,  33). 

ARKKAPARNA.  Kasyapa's  son  by  his  wife  Muni.  He 
was  a  De\agandharva.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65, 
Verse  43) . 

ARTHAM.  From  the  forehead  of  Mahavisnu  a  golden 
lotus  grew  up  from  which  Sri  Devi  was  born-  Dharm- 
arthas  (Dhai  ma  =  righteousness  and  artha  =wealth)  also 
were  born  from  Sri.  "From  the  forehead  of  Visnu, 
sprung  up  a  golden  lotus  and  His  wise  spouse  Sri  arose 
there  from  and  oh,  Pandava,  righteousness  and  wealth 
came  into  being  from  S"ri".  (Bhasabharata,  Santi  Parva, 
Chapter  59,  Stanzas  130  &  131) . 

ARUJAM.  A  sect  among  the  Raksasas.  (M.B.,  Vana 
Parva,  Chapter  285,  Verse  2) . 

ARULMOLITHEVAR.  The  Saiva  text  of  the  south  is 
called  Tirumura,  and  it  contains  twelve  songs.  The 
first  seven  of  those  songs  were  composed  by  Tirujnana- 
sambandha,  TirunavukkarSar  and  Sundaramurti.  The 
twelfth  song  is  called  Periyapurana  composed  by 
Arulmolithevar.  He  is  also  called  Sekhilar.  Tevar  was 
prime  minister  (A.D.  1063-1112)  of  Cola.  (Some  great 


1)  Birth.  Son  of  KaSyapa  by  Vinata.  KaSyapa,  son 
of  Brahma,  married  Vinata  and  Kadru,  and  being  so 
much  pleased  by  their  services  he  gave  them  boons. 
Kadru  got  the  boon  to  have  1000  naga  (serpent)  sons, 
and  Vinata  to  have  two  sons  more  powerful  and  vital 
than  the  sons  of  Kadru.  After  this  KaSyapa  went  into 
the  forest  again  for  Tapas.  After  a  period,  Kadru  gave 
birth  to  1000  eggs  and  Vinata  to  two.  Both  che  mothers 
kept  their  eggs  in  pots  so  that  they  were  in  the  right 
temperature.  After  500  years  the  pot  broke  up  and 
Kadru  had  her  1000  sons.  Vinata  felt  pained  at  this 
and  opened  one  of  her  pots.  A  child  only  half-developed 
emerged  from  the  egg  and  he  was  Aruna.  (M.B.,  Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  16,  Verses  5-7).  After  another  500 
years  the  other  egg  of  Vinata  hatched  itself  and  a  glow- 
ing son  emerged.  He  was  Garuda. 

2)  Genealogy.     While  Rama  and    Laksmana    wandered 
in  the  forest    searching   for  Slta  they  saw  the  wounded 
and    disabled  Jatayu.   Jatilyu  described   his   genealogy 
as  follows  :  "Kasyapa,    son    of  Brahma,    married    the 
daughters  of  Daksa.  Of  the  two  wives,  Vinata  delivered 
two  sons,  '  Garuda  and  Aruna.    Sampati    was  Aruna's 
elder    son    and     he     (Jatayu)     the    younger.  (Valmiki 
Ramayana,    Aranyakanda,     Canto     14).  Agni  Purana, 
Chapter  19  also  refers  to  Garuda  and  Aruna  as  the  sons 
of  Vinata. 

3)  Aruna  curses  his  mother.     The  fact   of  Vinata  forcing 
open  one  of  her  eggs  prematurely  and  Aruna  emerging 
out   of  it  with    only    a   half-developed  body  has  been 
mentioned  above.  Aruna  got  angry  at  the  haste   of   his 
mother    and    cursed    her    to    live  as  slave  of  Kadru  for 
500  years,  and  then  Garuda   would   redeem    her   from 
slavery.  He  also  asked  her  to  wait  for  500  years  so  that 
the  birth   of  another  physically  deficient  son  like  him- 
self might  be  avoided.  After  pronouncing  this  curse  Aruna 


rose  to  the  sky.  This  curse  was  the  reason  for  Vinata's 
becoming  a  slave  ofKadru.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter 
16,  Verses  18-23) . 

4)  Aruna    became    charioteer   of  Sun.     The  Sun    and    the 
Moon  betrayed  to  the  Devas  Rahu,  who  waited  at  the 
entrance  of  Devaloka  to  snatch  off  the  Nectar  (Amrtam) 
got   at  the   churning  of  the   sea  of  milk   (Kslrabdhi) . 
Thenceforth  Rahu  does  often  swallow  the   Sun  and  the 
Moon.  That  phenomenon  is  called  the  eclipse  ( of  the  Sun 
or  Moon.  Surya-grahana  and  Candra-grahana).  Enraged 
by  these  frequent  attacks   of  Rahu,  the  Sun-God  began 
once  to  burn  like  anything.   Murmuring  that  everyone 
would  cooperate  when  there  was  something  to  be  achiev- 
ed, but  would  go  on  their  own  way  when  the  object  was 
achieved,  the  Sun-God    began  burning  so   virulently  as 
to  destroy  all  living  forms,  and  the  Devas  were  frighten- 
ed   by  this  and  took  refuge  in  Brahma.   Brahma  called 
Aruna  and  asked  him  to  stand    as   charioteer   in  front 
of  the  Sun-God    everyday  so    that    the   Sun's   intensity 
might   be   reduced.    From  that  day  onwards  Aruna  has 
been  functioning  as  the  charioteer  of  the   Sun.   (M  B 
Adi  Parva,  Chapter  24,  Verses  15-20). 

5)  Birth  of  sons.     S~yenl,   wife  of  Aruna  delivered  two 
sons,  Sampati  and  Jafayu.  (M.B.,  Adi' Parva,  Chapter 
68,  Verse    71) . 

6)  Aruna    assumed  female    form.     Silavati,    the    chaste 
woman,  once  did  naked  Tapas  to  redeem  her  husband, 
Ugratapas  from  the  consequences  of  a  curse.  The  object 
of  her  tapas  was  to  prevent  the   next  dawn    (Sunrise). 
Owing   to   the  intensity   of  her  tapas  the  Sun  ceased  to 
rise,  and  this  gave  his  charioteer  Aruna  some  rest.  Then 
it  was  that  Aruna   came    to  know   of  a   programme    of 
naked  dance  by  the  women  in  Devaloka.  Women  alone 
were  admitted  to  the  dance  hall.  Aruna,  therefore,  assum- 
ed female   form  and    sat  among  the  Deva  women,  and 
the  beautiful  'female'  kindled  erotic  sentiments  in  Indra 
and  he  enjoyed  a  night  with  'her'.  Also,  a  son  was  born 
to  them.  And,  before  the  day  dawned  Aruna,  at  the  ins- 
tance of  Indra  entrusted  the  child  to  Ahalyadex  I  and  re- 
turned to  join  duty  as  the  Sun-God's  charioteer.  (Aruna, 
while  he  acted  as  Indra's  wife   was    called  Arumdevi)! 
Aruna   was   a   bit   late   to   report  for   duty,  and  when 
questioned    by   Sun  he  detailed  the  happenings  during 
the  last  night.  This  evoked  the  desire  in  the  Sun  to   see 
Aruna  in  female  form.  Aruna  did  so,   and  the   Sun  en- 
joyed her.  This  also  resulted  in  the  birth  of  a  son,    who 
too  was,  at  the  instance  of  the  Sun,  entrusted  to  Ahalya- 
devl.  AhalyadevI  brought  both  the  children  with  tender 
love,   which  Gautama   muni,  her  husband  did  not  like. 
He  cursed  them  and  turned  them  into  monkeys.    After 
some  time  Indra  went  to  Ahalya  to  see  his  child  and  he 
was    told    the  story  of  Gautama's  curse.  Indra  searched 
out  both  the  monkeys.  In  view  of  the  elder  one  having  a 
long   tail  he  was  called  Bali  (Vali)  and  the  neck  of  the 
second  one  being  very  beautiful,  he  was  named  Sugriva. 
At  that  time,    Rksaraja,  the  monkey  King  of  Kiskindha 
was  very  unhappy  because  he  had  no  sons.  He  came  to 
know  of  Bali  and  Sugriva,    and  requested  Indra  to  give 
both  the  monkeys  to  him  as  sons.  Indra  gladly  obliged 
him.     Indra   blessed   Bali    to    the   effect    that  half  the 
strength  of  anybody  who  attacked  him  would  be  added 
to    his   own   natural  power.  Indra  then  sent  him  and 
Sugriva  to  Kiskindha. 

7)  Synonyms.  Surasuta,  Anuru,  Aruna,  Kasyapi,  Garu- 

ARU1SA  II  56 

ARUrjJA  II.  A  king  of  the  solar  dynasty,  and  father  of 
TriSauku.  (Devi  Bhagavata,  Saptama  Skandha) . 

ARU^IA  III.  A  sage  in  ancient  India.  A  community  of 
Rsis  was  denoted  by  this  name.  Those  Rsis  were  called 
Arunas.  The  Ajas,  Prsnis,  Sikatas,  Ketus  and  Arunas — 
they  attained  Svarga  by  self  study.  (M.B.,  Siinti  Parva, 
Chapter  26,  Verse  7) . 

ARU^A  IV.  A  serpent.  Karkkotaka,  Vasuki,  Taksaka, 
Prthus'ravas,  Aruna,  Kunjara,  Mitra,  Samkha,  Kumuda, 
Pundarlka,  and  the  chief  of  serpents,  Dhi'taras{ra. 
(M.B.,  Mausala  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  15). 

ARU^JA  V.  A  Rsi.  Taittarlya  Aranyaka  refers  to  him 
as  born  from  the  flesh  of  Brahma  at  the  time  of  creation. 

ARUI^A  VI.  A  Danava  (Asura)  born  in  the  dynasty  of 
Vipracitti.  He  did  tapas  for  long  years  repeating  the 
Gayatri  mantra,  and  got  from  Brahma  the  boon  not  to 
die  in  war.  Becoming  very  arrogant  on  account  of  this 
boon  he  left  Patala  (nether  region)  for  the  earth  and 
deputed  a  messenger  to  challenge  Indra  for  war.  At  that 
time  a  heavenly  voice  called  out  that  as  long  as  Aruna 
did  not  give  up  the  Gayatri  he  could  not  be  worsted  in 
war.  Then  the  Devas  sent  Brhaspati  to  Aruna  to  make 
him  give  up  Gayatri.  Aruna  questioned  B/haspati  as  to 
%vhy  he  of  the  enemy  camp  had  come  to  him  (Aruna) . 
B/haspati  replied  :  "You  and  I  are  not  different;  both 
of  us  are  worshippers  of  Gayatri  Devi.  Being  told  so 
Aruna  gave  up  worship  of  Gayatri  Devi,  and  she  felt 
offended  at  this  and  sent  thousands  of  beetles  against 
him.  Thus,  without  fighting  Aruna  and  his  army  were 
extinguished.  (Devi  Bhagavata). 

ARUIifA  VII.  A  son  of  Narakasura.  When  Narakasura 
was  killed  Aruna  along  with  his  six  brothers  fought 
again_st  Sri  Krsna  and  was  killed. 

ARU^JA  I.  An  Apsara  woman  born  of  Pradha,  wife  of 
Kasyapa.  Pradha  and  Kasyapa  had  the  following  child- 
ren. Alambusa,  MisrakesI,  Vidyutparna,  Tilottama, 
Raksita,  Rambha  and  Manorama.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  65,  Verses  50,51). 

ARUI^A  II.  A  tributary  of  the  river  Sarasvati.  (M.B., 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  83,  Verse  15). 

ARU^ASAMGAMAM.     The  place   where   Aruna   falls 
into  Sarasvati.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  43,  Verses 
ARUNDHATI  I.     Wife  of  Sage  Vasistfia. 

(1)  Birth.  She  was  born  as  the  daughter  of  Karddama 
Prajapati  and  Devahuti.  (See  Vasistha). 

(2)  Other  information.   ( 1 )   Once  ArundhatI    got   suspi- 
cious about  the    character  of  Vasistha  and  as  a  result 
of   misunderstanding    her    chaste    husband  her  beauty 
suffered  a  set-back.  (M.B.,    Adi   Parva,    Chapter  232, 
Verses  27-29). 

(2)  ArundhatI  shone    forth  in  Brahma's  assembly  with 
other  Devls  like,  Prthvi,  Hrl,  Svahaklrti,  Sura  and  Sad. 
(M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  11,  Verse  41). 

(3)  She  outshone  all  other  chaste  women  in  devotion  to 
her  husband.  She  owed  her  great  power  to  her  chastity 
and    service   of  her  husband.    (M.B.,  Aranya    Parva, 
Chapter  225,  Verse  15). 

(4)  The  seven  great  Rsis  once  offered  her  an  honourable 
seat.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  226,  Verse  8) . 

(5)  There  is  a  story  in   the  Mahabharata  of  how  Siva 
once   blessed    ArundhatI.   While    the  seven  great  Rsis 
were  staying  at  the  Himalayas  it  did  not  rain  consecu- 
tively for  twelve  years,  and  the   Munis  suffered    much 
without  either  roots  or  fruits  to   eat.    Then  ArundhatI 


began  a  rigorous  tapas,  and  Siva  appeared  before  her 
disguised  as  a  brahmin.  Since,  due  to  the  failure  of 
rains,  ArundhatI  had  no  food  with  her.  She  cooked  food 
with  some  cheap  roots  and  served  the  guest  with  it. 
and  with  that  it  rained  profusely  all  over  the  land.  Siva 
then  assumed  his  own  form  and  blessed  Arundhati, 
and  from  that  day  onwards  it  became  a  sacred  spot. 
(M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  48,  Verses  38-54). 

(6)  ArundhatI  once  pointed  out  to  Vi'sdarbhi  the  evils 
of   receiving   remuneration    (fee).    (M.B.,   AnuSasana 
Parva,  Chapter  10,  Verse 45). 

(7)  On  another  occasion  she    spoke  about    the  secret 
principles   of  ethics   among   others.  (M.B.,  Anusasana 
Parva,  Chapter  130,  Verses  3-11). 

(8)  Once  all  the  Devas  eulogized  ArundhatI  and  Brahma 
blessed   her.  (M.B.,   Anusasana    Parva,    Chapter    130, 
Verses  12  and  13). 

(9)  ArundhatI    and  Vasistha    did  tapas    at  the  sacred 
Sarasvati    tirtha   and    entered    into   Samadhi.    (M.B., 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  130,   Verse  17). 

ARUNDHATI  II.  A  wife  of  Kala  (God  of  death) . 
ArundhatI,  Vasu,  YamI,  Lamba,  Bhanu,  Marutvati, 
Samkalpa,  Muhurta,  Sadhya  and  VisVa  are  the  ten 
wives  of'Kala.  (Visnu  Purana,  Part  1,  Chapter  15). 

ARUNDHATIVATAM.  A  holy  place.  If  one  takes  one's 
bath  during  three  days  in  the  Samudraka  tirtha  nearby 
and  also  starves  one  will  get  the  results  of  AsVamedha 
yaga.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  84,  Verse  41). 

ARUNl.  Name  given  to  Aruna  when  he  attended 
Indra's  assembly  disguised  as  female.  (See  Aruna). 

ARUI^ODA.  A  river  flowing  through  the  island  of 
Plaksa,  one  of  the  seven  islands  of  ancient  times.  The 
wind  around  ten  yojanas  of  Plaksa  is  very  fragrant 
because  it  carries  the  divine  fragrance  being  emitted 
always  from  the  bodies  of  Parvatl  and  her  attendants, 
who  drink  water  from  river  Arunoda.  (Devi  Bhaga- 
vata, Asjama  Skandha). 

AROPA. '  One  of  Daksa's  daughters.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  65,  Verse  46) . 

ARUPATTIMDVAR.  (The  sixty-three's).  In  ancient 
times  there  were  sixty- three  devotees  of  Siva  in  the  south. 
They  were  called  Nayanaras  and  they  have  composed 
many  famous  sacred  songs.  Prominent  among  them  were 
Tirujnanasambandha,  Tirunavukkarasa  and  Sundara- 

ARVA.     The  son  of Ripuriijaya.  (Visnu  Purana). 

ARVAVASU.  An  ancient  Ascetic  who  had  been  a  lumi- 
nary in  the  Durbar  hall  of  King  Yudhisjhira.  There 
is  a  story  in  the  Mahabharata  showing  the  merits  of 
penance  of  Arvavasu.  This  story  was  told  by  the  her- 
mit Lomasa  to  the  Pandavas,  when  they  arrived  at  the 
holy  bath  Madhugilasamanga,  during  their  exile  in 
the  forest.  "Long  ago  two  ascetics  Raibhya  and  Bhara- 
dvaja  had  built  their  hermitages  and  lived  here.  A  son 
named  Yavakrlta  was  born  to  Bharadvaja.  To  Raibh- 
ya, two  sons  called  Arvavasu  and  Paravasu  were  born. 
Raibhya  and  his  sons  were  learned  men.  Bharadvaja  and 
Yavakrlta  became  ascetics.  Yavakrlta  started  doing 
penance  with  a  view  to  get  the  boon  of  learning  com- 
ing to  him  automatically  without  getting  it  directly 
from  Brahmins.  When  his  penance  became  severe  Indra 
appeared  and  told  him  that  the  boon  he  asked  for  was 
an  impossibility  and  tried  to  dissuade  him  from  his 
attempt.  Yavakrlta  was  not  willing  to  give  up  penance. 
Later  Indra  came  in  the  guise  of  a  Brahmin  to  the 




Banks  of  the  Ganges  and  began  to  build  a  dam  with 
sand  particles.  Yavakrita  said  that  it  was  an  impossible 
task.  Indra  said  that  the  desire  of  Yavakrita  also  was 
as  impossible  as  that.  Still  Yavakrita  did  not  show  any 
intention  of  drawing  back.  Finally  Indra  granted  him 
the  boon. 

Yavakrita  returned  to  the  hermitage.  Full  of  arrogance 
he  hankered  after  the  daughter-in-law  of  Raibhya. 
Raibhya  plucked  a  tuft  of  hair  from  his  head  and  put 
it  as  oblation  in  fire  and  created  a  giant  who  killed 
Yavakrita.  Bharadvaja  felt  sad  and  cursed  Raibhya 
that  he  would  be  killed  by  his  son.  Then  with  Yava- 
krita hejumped  into  the  fire  and  died. 
At  that  time  Bi'haddyumna,  a  Brahmin  performed  a 
sacrifice.  He  invited  Arvivasu  and  Paravasu  as  helpers. 
As  Paravasu  was  going  along  the  forest  he  saw  his  father 
covered  with  the  hide  of  a  deer  and  shot  at  him  think- 
ing him  to  be  a  deer.  He  stealthily  informed  the  matter 
to  Arvavasu.  Arvavasu  went  to  the  forest  completed  the 
funeral  rites  of  his  father  and  returned.  Paravasu  spread 
the  rumour  everywhere  that  Arvavasu  had  murdered 
his  father.  In  the  innocence  of  Arvavasu,  nobody 
believed.  Everyone  avoided  him.  He  became  sad  and 
forlorn  and  went  to  the  forest  arid  did  penance  to  the 
Sun.  The  Sun  appeared  before  him  and  blessed  him. 
He  returned  and  brought  Yavakrita,  Bharadvaja  and 
Raibhya  to  life  again. 

All  these  occurrences  happened  in  this  bath  called 
Madhubilasarhgama.  (Mahabharata,  Aranya  Parva, 
Chapters  135,  136,  137,  138). 

The  report  of  a  conversation  between  this  hermit,  and 
Sri  Krsna  who  had  been  on  his  way  to  Hastinapura, 
is  given  in  the  Mahabharata,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  336, 
Stanza  7.  Arvavasu  also  is  counted  among  the  hermits 
who  possessed  the  Brightness  of  Brahma  like  Rudra. 
"Hermit  Vasistha  !  Now  I  shall  give  their  names  in 
order.  Yavakrita,  Raibhya,  Arvavasu,  Paravasu,  Kak- 
slvan,  Aursija,  Bala,  Aiigiras,  Rsimedha,  Tithisuta, 
Kanva,  these  are  the  Bright  hermits,  having  the  bright- 
ness of  Brahma,  lauded  by  the  world  and  as  bright  as 
Rudra,  Fire  and  Vasu".  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva, 
Chapter  150,  Stanzas  30,  31  &  32) . 
Arvavasu  did  penance  to  the  Sun  for  getting  children. 
The  Sun-God  came  down  from  his  way  in  the  sky  and 
gave  him  through  Aruna  directions  mentioned  in  the 
Kalpa  (one  of  the  six  Sastras  or  Sciences)  regarding 
Saptami  rituals.  Arvavasu  observed  them  strictly  and 
as  a  result  he  got  children  and  wealth.  This  story  is 
given  in  Bhavisya  Purana,  Brahma  Parva) . 

ARYAMA.  One  _of  the  twelve  Adityas  born  to  Kasyapa 
and  Aditi.  (Adityas  =  sons  of  Aditi) .  The  twelve 
Adityas  are,  Dhrita,  Aryama,  Mitra,  Sakra,  Varuna, 
Arhs'a,  Bhaga  Vivasvan,  Pusl,  Savita,  Tvasta  and 
Visnu.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65,  Stanza  15). 
Arhsa  is  sometimes  called  AMSU. 

ARYASVA.  A  King  of  the  Surya  varhsa  (Solar 
dynasty).  See  the  word  VAMSAVALl  (Genealogy). 

ASAMANJASA  (ASAMANJA).  A  King  of  the  Solar 
dynasty  born  to  Sagara.  For  genealogy  see  under 

1 )  Birth.  There  is  a  story  about  his  birth  in  the  Rama- 
yana. Once  there  was  a  king  called  Sagara  in  Ayodhya. 
He  married  two  women  named  KesinI  and  Sumati.  For 

a  long  time  they  had  no  sons  and  so  they  went  to  the 
Himalayas  and  started  penance  there  in  the  mount  of 
Bhrguprasravana.  After  a  hundred  years  Bhrgumaha- 
rsi  appeared  before  them  and  pleased  them  thus  :  "Your 
elder  wife  KesinI  will  give  birth  to  a  son  who  will 
continue  your  dynasty  and  your  second  wife  will  give 
birth  to  sixty  thousand  children".  After  a  few  years 
KesinI  gave  birth  to  Asamanjas  and  Sumati  to  a  big 
ball  of  flesh.  That  ball  broke  and  sixty  thousand  babes 
came  out  from  it.  (Valmlki  Ramayana,  Balakanda, 
Sarga  83 ) . 

2)  Character  of  Asamanjas.  He  was  a  very  cruel  man 
always  tormenting  people.  He  used  to  throw  little  child- 
ren into  the  Sarayu  river  and  stand  on  the  banks  of  the 
river  enjoying  the  sight  of  the  children  dying  drowning. 
People  hated  him.  His  father,  therefore,  drove  him  out 
of  his  palace.  To  this  bad  man  was  born  Arhsuman,  a 
King  who  became  the  favourite  of  the  people.  (V5.1- 
mlki  Ramayana,  Balakanda,  Sarga  38). 


ASANI.  A  holy  hermit.  While  Sri  Krsna  was  going  to 
Hastinapura  this  hermit  met  him  on  the  way.  (M.B., 
Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  83) . 

ASIDDHARTHA.  A  minister  of  Dasaratha.  (Valmlki 
Ramayana,  Sloka  3,  Sarga  7,  Balakanda). 

ASIKNI  I.  A  river  flowing  through  the  Punjab  in  India. 
This  is  called  Candrabhaga  and  also  Cinab  (Clna) . 
The  Rgveda  also  mentions  about  this.  (M.B..  Bhisma 

ASIKNI  II.  A  wife  of  Daksa.  DaksaprajSpati,  son  of 
Brahma,  commenced  creation  with  his  own  mind.  When 
he  found  (hat  it  was  not  conducive  to  the  propagation 
of  the  species  he  pondered  over  the  subject  once  more 
and  decided  to  effect  it  by  the  sexual  union  of  the  male 
and  the  female.  He,  therefore,  married  Asikni  daughter 
of  Viranaprajapati.  There  is  a  version  in  the  seventh 
Skandha  of  Devi  Bhagavata  that  Viranl  was  born  of 
the  left  thumb  of  Brahma.*  Then  the  virile  Daksa- 
prajapati  begot  by  Asikni  five  thousand  Haryasvas  with 
a  view  to  propagating  his  species  and  the  Haryaivas 
also  evinced  great  desire  to  increase  their  number. 
Knowing  this  devarsi  Narada  of  enchanting  words 
approached  them  and  said  "Oh,  HaryasVas,  I  under- 
stand you,  energetic  young  men,  are  going  to  continue 
creation.  Phew  !  You  are  children  who  have  not  cared 
to  understand  the  ins  and  outs  or  ups  and  downs  of  this 
earth  and  then  how  do  you  think  you  can  create 
people  ?  You  are  all  endowed  with  the  power  to  move 
about  on  all  sides  without  any  obstruction  and  you  are 
only  fools  if  you  do  not  attempt  so  find  out  the  limits 
of  this  earth".  Hearing  this  they  started  on  a  tour  to 
different  sides  of  the  earth  to  find  out  its  boundaries. 
Just  like  worms  fallen  into  the  ocean  the  HaryaS vas  have 
never  returned  so  far. 

When  he  found  that  the  Haryasvas  were  lost  the  mighty 
Daksa  begot  in  the  daughter  of  Viranl  a  thousand  sons 
called  Sabalasvas.  They  were  also  desirous  of  propaga- 
tion but  were  also  persuaded  by  the  words  of  Narada  to 
follow  the  footsteps  of  their  elder  brothers.  They  dis- 
cussed it  among  themselves  and  said  "The  words  of  the 
Maharsi  are  right.  We  must  also  follow  the  course  taken 
by  our  brothers.  It  is  wise  to  commence  creation  after 

*It  was   Mahavisnu  who  gave  Daksa  his  wife,  Asikni,  when  Daksa  was  doing  penance  in  Vindhya.  (§as{a  Skandha,  Bhagavata). 




knowing  the  size  of  the  earth."  They  also  went  to 
different  sides  and  never  returned  just  like  rivers  falling 
into  the  ocean.  The  loss  of  the  Sabalasvas  infuriated 
Daksa  and  he  cursed  Narada. 

Again  to  commence  creation  Daksa  got  of  Asikni  sixty 
girls.  Of  these  ten  he  gave  to  Dharmadeva,  thirteen 
to  Kasyapa,  twentyseven  to  Soma  and  four  to  Aris^a- 
nemi.  Two  were  given  to  Bahuputra,  two  to  Angiras 
and  two  to  the  scholar  Krsasva.  Dharmadeva's  wives 
were  Arundhati,  Vasu,  YamI,  Lamba,  Bhanu,  Marut- 
vati,  Sankalpa,  Muhurta,  Sadhya  and  VisVa.  Of  Visva 
were  born  Visvedevas.  Sadhya  delivered  the  Sadhyas, 
Marutva,  the  Marutvans  and  Vasu,  Vasus.  Bhanus  were 
born  of  Bhanu.  From  Muhurta  came  Muhurtabhimanis 
and  from  Lamba,  Ghosa  and  from  Yarnl,  Nagavithi. 
(Chapter  15,  AnuSasana  Parva,  1;  Visnu  Purana  and 
Skandha  6,  Bhagavata) . 

ASIKRSNA.  Son  of  AsVamedhas,  a  King  of  the  Lunar 
dynasty.  (Bhagavata,  9th  Skandha). 

ASILOMA.  Prime  Minister  of  Mahisagva.  (Devi  Bhaga- 
vata. 5th  Skandha). 

ASIPATRAVANA.  One  of  the  notorious  twentyeight 
hells.  If  you  destroy  forests  without  purpose  you  will  go 
to  this  hell.  (Chapter  6,  Anusasana  Parva  2,  Visnu 
Purana).  The  Devi  Bhagavata  describes  Asipatravana 
like  this  :  "Those  who  forsake  their  own  natural  duty 
and  go  in  for  that  of  others  are  thrown  into  this  hell; 
they  die  by  the  orderlies  of  Yama,  the  King  of  Death. 
There  they  will  be  whipped  by  a  whip  made  of  thorny 
herbs  and  as  they  run  about  with  pain  they  will  be 
followed  and  whipped.  Crashing  against  the  big  stones 
there  they  will  fall  fainting  and  the  moment  they  wake 
up  from  the  faint  they  will  be  stabbed  again.  This 
will  be  repeated.  (As^ama  Skandha,  Devi  Bhagavata) . 

ASITA.  A  celestial  maiden.  She  had  taken  part  in  the 
birthday  celebrations  of  Arjuna.  (Sloka  63,  Chapter 
122,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ASITA  I.  One  of  the  R^viksofthe  Sarpasatra  of  Jana- 

Some  details.  (1)  The  prominent  Rtviks  were  Bhargava, 
Kautsa,  Jaimini,  Sarhgarava,  Pihgala,  Vyasa,  Uddalaka 
Pramattaka,  Svetaketu,  Asita,  Devala,  Narada,  Parvata, 
Atreya,  Kundajara,  Kalaghajs,  Vatsya,  Kohala,  Deva- 
s"arma,  Maudgalya,  Samasaurabha.  (Chapter  53,  Adi 
Parva,  M.B.) 

(2)  Asita,  Devala,  VaiSampayana,  Sumantu  and  Jaimini 
were    disciples    of    Vyasa.    (Prathama     Skandha,  Devi 
Bhagavata) . 

(3)  Asita,  the  sage,  got  by  the  blessing  of  Siva    a    son 
named  Devala.   (Brahmavaivarta  Purana). 

(4)  Once  Asita    muni    explained    to  King  Janaka  the 
philosophy  of  rebirth.  (Brahmanda  Purana,  Chapter  47). 


Main  details.  (1)  He  is  one  of  those  who  spread  the  story 
of  Mahabharata  to  the  public.  Vyasa  wrote  the  Maha- 
bharata  into  a  lakh  of  books  and  first  taught  the  great 
epic  to  his  son,  the  sage  Suka.  He  later  expounded  it 
to  many  other  disciples.  Narada  spread  the  story  among 
the  devas,  Devala  among  the  Piti's,  Suka  among 
Gandharvas  and  Yaksas  and  VaiSampayana  among  men. 
(Slokas  107  &  108,  Chapter  1,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 
(2)  He  was  present  at  the  Sarpasatra  of  Janamejaya. 
(Sloka  8,  Chapter  53,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

(3)  He  attended  the  coronation  of  Yudhisthira  along 
with  Narada  and  Vyasa.  (Sloka  10,  Chapter  53,  Sabha 
Parva,  M.B.).  See  under  Devala  for  more  information. 
ASITADHANVA.  A  king  of  Vedic  times.  Sarhkhyayana 
Sutra  states  that  the  Veda  of  Asuravidya  was  written  by 
this  King. 

ASITADHVAJA.     Son   of  Kasyapa   and  Vina ta.  He  was 
present    at  a  birthday  celebration  of  Arjuna.  (Sloka  72, 
Chapter  122,  Adi  Pan  a,  M.B.). 
ASITAKASYAPA    (DEVALA).     For  details    see    under 

JAIGlSAVYA  and  Devala.. 

ASITAPARVATA.  A  mountain  situated  on  the  banks  of 
the  river,  Narmada,  in  the  country  of  Anarta.  (Sloka  11, 
Chapter  89,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ASMAKA  1.  Son  born  to  Vasistha  by  the  wife  of  Kalma- 
sapada the  King  of  Ayodhya.  (See  Iksvaku  vamSa)  while 
the  King  Kalmasapada  was  walking  through  the  forest 
hunting  he  saw  Sakti  the  son  of  Vasistha.  As  Sakti  did  not 
care  to  give  room  for  the  King,  Kalmasapada  wounded 
Sakti,  who  cursed  the  King  and  changed  him  to  a  Raksasa 
(giant) .  The  giant  immediately  killed  Sakti.  After  many 
years  Vasistha  blessed  the  King  and  changed  the  form  of 
the  giant  and  gave  him  back  his  former  shape.  The  King 
was  delighted  at  having  recovered  his  former  shape.  He 
took  Vasistha  to  his  palace.  Madayanti  the  wife  of  the  King 
with  his  permission  went  to  Vasistha  and  got  with  child. 
Vasistha  returned  to  the  forest.  Even  after  the  lapse  of  a 
long  period  she  did  not  give  birth  to  the  child.  Madayanti 
who  was  miserable  at  this,  took  an  'asman'  (a  small 
cylindrical  piece  of  the  granite  used  to  crush  things  placed 
on  a  flat  square  piece  of  granite)  and  crushed  her  stomach 
with  it  and  she  delivered  a  son.  As  he  was  born  by  using 
'Asma'  he  was  named  Asmaka.  This  King  had  built  a 
city  called  Paudhanya.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  176). 
ASMAKA  II.  ASmaka  (m)  is  a  place  between  the  rivers 
Godavari  and  Mahismatl.  ASmaka  was  a  king  of  this 
land.  He  fought  against  the  Kauravas  on  the  Pandava 
side.  (Karna  Parva). 
ASMAKA  III.  A  sage.  (M.B.,  Sand  Parva,  Chapter  47, 

Sloka  5). 

ASMAKADAYADA.  Son  of  the  King  Asmaka.  He  was  a 
soldier  of  the  Kaurava  army.  He  was  killed  in  the 
battle  by  Abhimanyu.  (Slokas  22  and  23,  Chapter  37, 
Drona  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASMAKl.  Wife  of  Pracinva.  KaSyapa  was  born  to 
Marlci,  son  of  Brahma.  To  Kasyapa  was  born  of  his 
wife  Aditi,  daughter  of  Daksa,  Vivasvan.  Descending  in 
order  from  Vivasvan  were  born  Manu,  Ila,  Puriiravas, 
Ayus,  Nahusa,  Yayati.  Yayati  had  two  wives,  Deva- 
yani  and  Sarmistha.  The  first  was  the  daughter  of 
Sukra  and  the  second  the  daughter  of  Vrsaparva.  To  were  born  two  sons,  Yadu  and  Turvasu 
and  to  Sarmistha  were  born  three  sons,  Druhyu,  Anu- 
druhyu  and  Puru.  From  Yadu  came  the  dynasty  of 
Yadavas  and  from  Puru  came  the  dynasty  of  Pauravas. 
Kausalya  was  the  wife  of  Puru  and  her  son  was  Jana- 
mejaya. Puru  conducted  three  AsVamedhas  and  secured 
the  title  of  Visvajita  (conqueror  of  the  world)  and  then 
accepted  the  ascetic  life  and  went  to  the  forests.  Jana- 
mejaya married  Ananta  alias  Madhavi  and  got  a  son 
named  Pracinva.  Because  he  conquered  all  the  land 
extending  to  the  eastern  horizon  he  got  the  name 
Pracinva.  Pracinva  married  a  yadava  girl  of  name 
Aarnakl  and  got  a  son  named  Sariiyati.  (Slokas  6  to  13, 
Chapter  95,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 


ASMANAGARA.  A  city  of  the  nether  world.  The  Uttara 
Ramayana  states  that  Ravana  entered  this  city  when  he 
was   going  home    in    the  Puspaka  Vimana     (the    aero- 
plane of  ancient  times)    stolen  from  Kubera. 
ASMAPRSTA(M).     The  sacred  pond  near Gaya   known 
as  Pretasila.  It  is  believed  that  if  you  perform  obsequies 
here  even  the  sin  of  killing  a  brahmin  would  fade  away. 
ASMA.     An  ancient  sage. 

ASMOPAKHYANAM.  This  is  called  Asmaglta  also. 
After  the  great  Kuruksetra  battle  Vyasa  spoke  to 
Dharmaputra  to  console  him  and  the  philosophy  he 
then  expounded  is  called  Asmopakhyanam.  Once  King 
Janaka  asked  the  great  scholar  Asman  on  the  changes 
that  occur  in  Man  as  wealth  comes  and  goes.  Asman 
then  gave  the  King  the  same  philosophy  which  Vyasa 
gave  to  Dharmaputra  and  Asman's  oration  to  King 
Janaka  came  to  be  known  as  Asmaglta.  (Chapter  28 
Sand  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASOKA  I.  The  charioteer  of  Bhimasena.  When  Bhlma- 
sena  was  fighting  a  battle  with  Srutayu  the  King  of 
Kaliriga,  this  charioteer  brought  the  chariot  to  him. 
(M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  54,  Stanzas  70  and  71). 
ASOKA  II.  A  minister  of  King  Dasaratha.  Dasaratha 
had  eight  ministers.  They  were  Jayanta,  Dhrsti,  Vijaya, 
Asiddhartha,  Arthasadhaka,  Asoka,  Mantrapala  and 
Sumantra.  (Valmlki  Ramayana,  Balakanda,  Sarga  7). 
ASOKA  III.  A  King  of  the  family  of  the  famous  Asura 
Asva.  This  king  had  been  ruling  over  Kalinga.  (Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  67,  Stanza  14). 

ASOKADATTA.     Once    the    Vidyadhara     (a     class    of 
semi  gods)  named  Asokavega  was  going  through  the  sky, 
when  the  hermit  maids  of  Galavasrama  ( the  hermitage 
ofGalava)  were   bathing  in  the  Ganges.    He  hankered 
after  them.    So    the    hermits  cursed  him  and  changed 
him  to  a  man.  The  name  of  Asokavega  in  his    human 
birth  was   Asokadatta.    The   story   of  Asokadatta    in 
the    "Kathasaritsagara"    is  as  follows  : 
Long  ago  there  lived  a  Brahmin  named  Govindasvami, 
near  the  river  Kalindi.    He  had    two  sons,  Asokadatta 
and  Vijayadatta.  They  were  good  men  like  their  father. 
Once    there  occurred    a  great   famine  in  the  country. 
Scarcity   prevailed    everywhere.  Govindasvami  told  his 
wife,  "I  cannot  bear  to  see  the    difficulties  of  our  peo- 
ple. So  let  us  give  everything   we  have  for  famine  relief 
and  then  go  to  Kasi  and  live  there."  His  good-natured 
wife    agreed    to  it  and   giving  everything  for  the  relief 
work,  Govindasvami  with  his  wife   and  children  started 
for  Kasi.    On  the   way   he  met    a  hermit  sage  who  had 
renounced  the  world.  He  had  his  whole  body  besmear- 
ed with  ashes.  With  his  tuft  of  hair  and  garment  made 
of   the   barks  of  trees,  he  seemed  to  be  Siva.  Govinda- 
svami bowed  before  him,    and   asked  about  the  future 
of  his  children.   The  Yogi  (hermit)  said,  "the  future  of 
your  two  sons  is  good.  But  this  Vijayadatta  will  go  away 
from  you.  Reunion  will    become    possible  by  the  good- 
ness of  Asokadatta."  Govindasvami  felt  glad  and  sad  at 
the  same  time.  Leaving    the  hermit    they  proceeded  to 
Kasi.   They    neared   Kasi.    There  was  a  temple  on  the 
way.  They  stayed  there   and  conducted   worship  in  the 
temple  and  took  shelter  for  the    night  under  a  tree  out- 
side the  temple.  Other  travellers  also  were  there.  Being 
tired   of  walking   all  went    to   sleep.    Vijayadatta  the 
second  son  of  Govindasvami   caught  cold.    So  he  woke 
up  in  the  night.    When    he    began  to  shiver,  because  of 
cold,  he  called  his  father   and  said,  "Father,  it  appears 


that  I  have    caught    cold  and  I  am   shivering.  I  would 
grow  better  if  I  could  get  some    fire.  So  please  get  some 
twigs    and   make  a  fire.    I  don't   think,  I  may  complete 
this  night  otherwise".   They   saw  a  fire  close  by.  It  was 
in  a  burial-ground.    Govindasvami  took  Vijayadatta  to 
that  place  where  a  dead  body  was  burning. 
Vijayadatta  sat   near    the  fire   and  warmed  himself.  In 
the   meanwhile   he   was    talking  to   his  father.  He  said, 
"Father,    what   is    that  round  thing  seen  in  the  middle 
of  ^the    fire  ?"  "That  is  the  head  of  a  dead  body  burn- 
ing" said  his  father  who  was  standing  close  by.  He  took 
a  burning  faggot  and  hit  at   the  head.  The  head  broke 
into  pieces  and  some    viscous   stuff  from    the   head  fell 
into  his   mouth.    There    occurred  a  sudden   change  in 
Vijayadatta.    He    became   a   fearful    giant   with    huge 
tusks  and  hair    standing   erect  on  the  head.    Somehow 
or  other  he  got  a  sword  also.  That  giant  took  the  burn- 
ing head  from  fire  and   drank  up  all  the   viscous  liquid 
in  it.  With  his  tongue  which  looked  like  blazing  fire  he 
licked  the  bones.  Then  he   threw  away   the  skull.  Then 
he  approached   his  father  with  open  mouth  to  swallow 
him.  "You  !  giant,  Don't  kill  your  father,  come  here  !" 
a   voice  shouted  to  him  from    the   burial-ground.  Thus 
Vijaya   became    a   giant  and  disappeared.   "Oh  dear  ! 
my  child  !   my  son  !   Vijayadatta!",    cried   his    father 
and  came  away  from  the  burial-place,  and  went  to  the 
shelter  of  the  tree   and    told    his  wife,  son  and  others 
everything  that    had  happened.      Stricken   with   grief 
they  all  fell   on    the  ground.    All   those    who  came  to 
worship  in  the  temple  gathered  round  them  and  tried 
to  console  them.  Among  them   was  a  merchant  named 
Samudradatta,  a  native  of  Kasi.  He  consoled  Govinda- 
svami and    his    family  and    took   them  to  his  house  in 
Kas"I.  He  showed  hospitality  and    gave  them  a  separate 
place  to  live  in.    Noble  men  are  kind  to  those  who  are 
in  distress.  The    great   hermit  had    said  that  their  son 
would   come   back  in   due  course.  Hoping  that  such  a 
time  would   come    soon    Govindasvami  and  his  family 
dragged  on  their  time.  At   the   request  of  that  wealthy 
merchant   they   stayed  there   on.  Asokadatta    got    his 
education  there.  When  he    grew  up  to  a  youth,  he  got 
physical  training.  He  became  such  an  expert  in  wrestl- 
ing and  other  modes  of  fighting  that  nobody  on  earth 
could    overcome  him.    During   a   festival    there  was  a 
contest   in   wrestling.    A  renowned    wrestler  had  come 
from  the  south  to  take  part  in  the  contest.    In  the  con- 
test which  took  place  in  the  presence  of  Pratapamukuta, 
the  King  of  Kas"i,  the  wrestler    challenged  every  wrest- 
ler   in    the   country   and  had  overthrown  each  one  of 
them.  Having  heard  from  the  merchant  Samudradatta, 
the  King  sent  for   Asokadatta  and  put  him  against  the 
wrestler    from  the    south.   A    very   serious  fight  began 
between  the  two.   They  grappled  each  other  with  firm 
and  resolute  grips.  The  audience  was  struck  with  won- 
der at  the  variety  of  the  modes  of  grappling  and  twist- 
ing  and    turning  they  exhibited.    Applause  came  from 
everywhere.    The    fight  lasted    for    a  very    long  time. 
Finally    Asokadatta    threw    the    other  to  the   ground, 
and   got   much    presents    from  the  King.  Gradually  he 
became   a   favourite   of   the   King,    and    consequently 
became  wealthy.  One  day    the    King  went  to  a  temple 
of  Siva,  a  little   away    from  the  capital  to  observe  fast 
on  the  fourteenth  night  of  the  Moon  and  while  return- 
ing   he    passed   by  a   burial-ground  and  heard  a  voice 
saying,  "Oh  Lord  !  The  judge    had  ordered  me  to  be 




hanged,  for  a  charge  of  murder,  merely  out  of  personal 
grudge  and  without  any  proof,  and  this  is  the  third  day 
since  I  was  put  on  this  scaffold.  My  life  has  not  yet 
departed  from  the  body.  My  tongue  is  dried  of  thirst. 
Have  the  kindness  to  give  me  a  little  water." 

"Punished  without  proof  !  It  will  appear  only  so  to  him 
who  is  punished".  Thinking  thus  the  King  asked 
Asokadatta  to  give  the  man  some  water.  "Who  will  go 
to  a  burial-ground  in  the  night  ?  I  myself  shall  take 
water  to  him".  Saying  so  Asokadatta  took  water  and 
went  to  the  burial-ground  and  the  King  went  to  the 
palace.  The  world  was  in  darkness.  With  here  and 
there  a  spark  of  fire  and  light  of  fire-flies  and  lightning 
mingled  with  the  shouting  of  ghosts  and  the  roaring  of 
the  demons  and  occasional  cries  of  birds  and  animals 
the  burial-ground  was  a  dreadful  place,  where  Asoka- 
datta came  and  asked,  "Who  asked  the  King  for 
water  ?"  He  heard  a  voice  saying  "Myself"  and  he 
went  to  the  place  of  the  voice  and  saw  a  man  lying  on 
a  scaffold.  An  extremely  beautiful  woman  also  was  lying 
under  the  scaffold  crying,  and  getting  ready  to  jump 
into  the  burning  fire  since  she  could  not  bear  the 
separation  of  her  husband  on  the  new  moon  day.  She 
had  plenty  of  golden  ornaments  on  her  body.  Asoka- 
datta asked  her,  "Madam  !  who  are  you,  why  are  you 
crying  here  ?"  She  replied,  "I,  an  unfortunate  woman, 
am  the  wife  of  the  man  on  the  scaffold.  My  intention 
is  to  burn  myself  along  with  his  body.  I  am  waiting  for 
his  life  to  depart.  Because  of  my  sin  he  is  not  dying. 
This  is  the  third  day  since  he  is  lying  like  this.  He  will 
be  asking  for  water  now  and  then.  So  I  have  brought 
some  water.  But  his  face  being  high  I  cannot  reach  it 
and  I  am  seeing  him  burning  with  thirst,  and  am 
swallowing  the  grief."  Asokadatta  said,  "See  !  The 
King  has  sent  this  water  for  him.  Now  climb  on  my 
back  and  you  yourself  give  him  this  water." 

The  woman  instantly    took  the    water  and  got  on  the 
back  of  ASokadatta  who  had    stooped    down  for  her  to 
climb  on  his  back.  After  a  while    he  felt  drops  of  blood 
falling  on  his  back   and  looking   up  he  saw  her  cutting 
flesh  from  the  body  of  the  man   on  the  scaffold  and  eat- 
ing it.  He  got  wild  with  anger  and  catching  hold  of  her 
legs  he  was  about    to  strike  her  on  the   ground,  when 
she  shook  her  legs  free  and  ran  away  and  disappeared. 
Because  she    dragged    away    her   legs   with  force  one 
bangle   came  off    from    her    leg     and   was    left   with 
Asokadatta.  Her  behaviour  aroused  in  him  at  first  com- 
passion, detestation  in  the  middle  stage  and  fear  in  the 
final    stage,    and   when    she    had  disappeared   from  his 
sight  he  looked  at  the  bangle  she  had  left   behind   with 
astonishment.    When    he    reached    home  it    was  dawn. 
After  his  morning  ablution  he  went  to  the  palace.  "Did 
you  give  him  water  yesternight?"     asked  the  King  and 
he  replied  "Yes",  and  placed  the  bangle  before  the  King. 
"Where  did  you  get  this  from  ?"    the  King  asked  and  in 
reply  he  said  everything    that    had    happened    in    the 
night.  The  King  thought  that  ASokadatta  was  an  extra- 
ordinary  man    and    calling  his   queen    showed  her  the 
ornament  and  told  her  everything.  She  was  filled   with 
joy  and  wonder.  She  praised  ASokadatta   a    good    deal. 
The   King   said,    ''Dear    queen  !  This    Asokadatta  is  a 
young  man  of  greatness,  learning,  bravery,  truth  and  of 
good  birth.  He  is  handsome  too.  If  he   would    become 
"the  husband  of  our  daughter  what   a  good  thing  it  will 

be  ?  I  have  a  desire  to  give  him  our  daughter  Madana- 

The  queen  also  said  that  the  thought  was  pleasing  to 
her.  "This  youth  is  the  most  suitable  person  to  be  her 
husband.  Some  days  ago  Madanalekha  had  seen  him  in 
Madhu  garden  and  from  that  day  a  change  is  visible  in 
her.  All  laughing  and  playing  is  gone  from  her,  and  she 
spends  time  in  loneliness  and  thinking.  I  knew  this  from 
her  maids.  Because  of  my  thought  about  her  I  did  not 
sleep  last  night  and  only  just  closed  my  eyes  in  the 
dawn.  Then  it  seemed  to  me  that  a  divine  woman 
appeared  and  said  to  me,  ''My  daughter,  Don't  give 
your  daughter  Madanalekha  to  anybody  else.  She  had 
been  the  wife  of  ASokadatta  in  previous  birth".  I  woke 
up  immediately.  Believing  in  the  dream  I  consoled  our 
daughter.  I  am  glad  that  now  you  also  think  so.  Let  the 
Jasmine  creeper  entwine  round  the  Mango  tree." 
When  the  King  heard  these  things  from  his  queen,  with- 
out wasting  more  time  he  gave  his  daughter  Madana- 
lekha in  marriage  to  Asokadatta.  They  suited  each 
other  so  much  that  not  only  their  relatives,  but  the 
others  also  were  delighted.  Brahma  is  well  experienced 
in  joining  suitable  things  together.  As  they  were  all 
getting  on  well  one  day  the  queen  said  to  the  King, 
"My  lord  !  this  Bangle  being  single  doesn't  shine  well. 
We  must  have  another  bangle  made  in  the  same  shape 
and  design." 

The  King  immediately  had  some  goldsmiths  brought  be- 
fore him.  He  showed  them  the  bangle  and  asked  them 
to  make  one  of  the  same  pattern.  They  turned  it  on  all 
sides  and  looked  at  it  and  said,  "Please  your  highness  ! 
This  is  not  man-made.  It  is  not  possible  for  us  to  make 
one  of  this  kind.  Precious  stones  like  these  are  not 
available  in  this  earth.  So  the  only  possible  way  is  to 
search  for  its  mate  in  the  place  where  this  was  found. 
On  hearing  these  words  the  King  and  the  queen  were 
crestfallen.  Seeing  this  Asokadatta  said  that  he  would 
bring  the  mate  of  the  bangle.  Fearing  danger  the  King 
tried  to  dissuade  him.  But  ASokadatta  was  not  prepared 
to  change  his  decision.  He  took  the  bangle  and  went  to 
the  burial-ground  that  night.  To  get  the  bangle  he  had 
to  meet  the  same  woman  who  had  left  the  bangle.  He 
began  to  think  of  a  means  to  find  her  out.  He  procured 
a  corpse  took  it  on  his  shoulder  and  walked  about  call- 
ing out  "Do  you  want  flesh  ?"  He  heard  a  voice  say 
"Bring  it  here",  and  he  walked  in  that  direction.  He 
saw  a  beautiful  woman  who  appeared  to  be  the  mistress, 
sitting  in  the  midst  of  so  many  servant  maids  on  a  tree. 
He  called  out  "Take  the  flesh".  She  asked  "How  much 
will  it  cost?"  Asokadatta  said,  "There  is  a  bangle  with 
me.  If  you  will  give  me  another  bangle  like  this  you  shall 
have  the  whole  body".  Hearing  the  words  of  Asokadatta 
the  beautiful  woman  laughed  and  said,  "That  is  my 
bangle.  I  have  its  mate  with  me  also.  I  am  the  same  wo- 
man you  saw  when  you  came  to  give  water  to  the  man 
on  the  scaffold.  Now  the  situation  is  changed.  So  you  do 
not  recognize  me.  Tonight  is  the  fourteenth  lunar  night 
too.  It  was  good  that  you  thought  of  coming  to  night. 
Otherwise  you  would  not  have  seen  me.  Now  see;  let 
the  flesh  be  there.  If  you  will  consent  to  do  what  I  say  I 
shall  give  you  the  other  bangle  also."  ASokadatta  promis- 
ed to  do  what  she  required.  Then  she  began,  "There  is  a 
city  in  the  Himalayas  known  as  Trighanda.  There  lived  a 
giant  in  that  city.  His  name  was  Lambajihva.  I  bearing 
the  name  Vidyucchikha,  am  his  wife.  Only  one  daughter 




was  born  to  me.  Then  my  husband  was  killed  in  a  fight 
with  his  overlord  Kapalasphota,  who  being  kind  did  not 
do  us  any  harm ;  and  I  live  in  my  house  now.  My  daugh- 
ter is  now  a  young  woman.  I  was  roaming  about  thinking 
of  a  way  to  tind  out  a  man  of  might  and  bravery  as  hus- 
band for  my  daughter.  Then  I  saw  you  going  this  way 
with  the  King.  The  moment  I  saw  you  I  knew  you  to  be 
the  man  I  was  searching  for  and  I  decided  to  give  you 
my  daughter  in  marriage.  What  you  heard  as  the  words 
of  the  man  on  the  scaffold  was  a  trick  played  by  me.  You 
brought  water  to  the  scaffold  and  nobody  needed  water 
then.  With  the  knowledge  I  have  in  Sorcery  and  witch- 
craft I  put  you  into  a  little  confusion.    I  gave  you  that 
bangle  to  bring  you    again   to  me   and  it   has    served 
the  purpose  today.  Let  us  go  to  my  house.  It  is  my  ear- 
nest wish  that  you  should  be  the  husband  of  my  daughter. 
And  I  shall  satisfy  your  immediate  need  also." 
The  brave  Asokadatta    agreed  to    the  request    of  the 
giantess.    She,  with  her  power,  took    him    to  their  city 
through  the  sky.    Asokadatta  saw    the  golden  city    and 
wondered  if  it  was  the  sun  taking  rest   after  its  tedious 
journey.  There  he  saw  the  daughter  of  the  giantess  and 
thought  her    to    be  the  incarnation  of  his    adventurous 
spirit.  She  was  beautiful  in  every  part  of  her  body.  She 
was  called  Vidyutprabha.  He  married  her  and  lived  with 
them    for    a    while.  Then  he  said  to  his  mother-in-law 
"Mother  !  now  give  me  the  bangle.  I  must  go  to  Kasi. 
I  have  promised  the  King  to  get  the  mate  of  this  bangle." 
Vidyucchikha  gave   her   son-in-law   her  bangle  and   a 
golden  lotus  flower  which  he  accepted  with  great  joy.  As 
before    he  came  with  the  giantess  to    the  burial-ground 
through  the  sky.  Then  she  said"!  shall  be  here  on  every 
fourteenth  lunar  night   on  the  root  of  this  tree    in  the 
burial-ground.  If  you  want  to  see  me  come  on  that  day." 
"I  shall  do  so",  so  saying  Asokadatta  came   away  and 
went  to  his  parents.  They  were  stricken  with  grief  at  the 
departure  and  exile  of  their  remaining  son.  They  were 
overcome  by  joy  at  the  return  of  their  son.  Not  waiting 
long  he  went  to  the  King,  his  father-in-law,  who  embrac- 
ed him  with  joy.    As'okadatta  gave  him  the  two  bangles. 
He  presented  the  golden  lotus  flower  also.  The  King  and 
the  queen  were  amazed  at  the  daring  spirit  of  ASokad  itta 
who  told  them  in  detail  everything  that  had  happened  to 
him.  The  fame  of  ASokadatta  grew  higher  and  higher. 
The  King  and  the  queen  thought  it  a  blessing  that  they 
got  so  adventurous  a  son-in-law.  Next  day  the  King  got 
a  casket  made  of  silver  and  placed  the  golden  lotus  at  the 
mouth  of  the  casket  and  placed  it  on  the  step  of  his  own 
temple  for  everyone  to   see.    The  white  casket  and  the 
red  lotus  were  very  charming  to  look  at  and  they  glistened 
as  the  fame  of  the  King  and  of  Asokadatta.  One  day  the 
King  looked  at  it  with  pleasure  and  said    "If  we  could 
get  one  more  lotus  like  this,  we  could  make  another  casket 
and  place  it  on  the  left  side  of  this".  As  soon  as  he  heard  it 
Asokadatta  said  "If  the  King  orders  it  shall  be  brought". 
But    the  King  said    "Ho '    you  need  not   go    anymore 
on  erranda  like  this.  This  is  not  such  an  urgent   need". 
After  a  few  days  the  fourteenth  lunar  night  came.  Leav- 
ing his  wife  the  princess  sleeping  in  the   bed  he  left  the 
palace  and  reached  the  burial-ground.  He  saw  his  mother- 
in-law  the  giantess  and  went  with  her  to  the  city  of  the 
giant  and  lived  there  happily  for  a  while  with  his  wife 
Vidyutprabha.  When  he  was  about  to  retur  n  he  requested 
Vidyucchikha  to  give  him  one  more  golden  lotus.  She  said 
that  there  was  no  more  lotus  with  her  and  that  they  grew 

in  the  lake  of  the  giant  King  Kapalasphota.  Asokadatta 
requested  her  to  show  him  that  lake.  At  first  Vidyuc- 
chikha dissuaded  him  from  this  attempt.  But  he  was 
stubborn.  So  she  took  him  to  a  place  away  from  the 
lake  and  showed  it  to  him.  The  lake  was  full  of  golden 
lotus  flowers.  It  was  a  pleasing  sight.  Asokadatta  imme- 
diately got  down  into  the  lake  and  began  to  pluck  the 
flowers.  The  guards  came  and  opposed  him.  He  killed 
a  few  of  them.  The  others  went  to  their  master  and  in- 
formed about  the  theft.  Kapalasphota  with  his  weapons 
came  shouting  and  roaring  and  saw  his  elder  brother 
Asokadatta.  He  was  overpowered  by  joy  and  wonder. 
Throwing  away  his  weapons,  with  love  and  devotion 
towards  his  elder  brother  he  bowed  before  him.  ''My 
brother  !  I  am  Vijayadatta  your  younger  brother.  By 
the  will  of  God  I  lived  as  a  giant  so  long.  You  might 
have  heard  this  from  father.  Because  we  have  met  now 
by  good  luck  I  remembered  that  I  was  a  Brahmin.  My 
giantness  is  gone.  On  that  day  something  obscured  my 
mind.  That  is  why  I  became  a  giant".  When  he  heard 
the  words  of  his  younger  brother  Asokadatta  embraced 
him.  Both  shed  tears  of  joy.  At  that  time  Prajnapti 
Kausika  the  teacher  of  the  Vidyadharas  came  to  them 
and  said,  "You  are  Vidyadharas.  All  this  happened  due 
to  a  curse.  Now  you  and  your  people  are  liberated  from 
the  curse.  So  learn  the  duties  and  functions  of  your 
class  and  with  your  people  take  your  proper  place  in 
the  society."  Having  taught  them  everything  they  re- 
quired he  disappeared.  Thus  the  Vidyadhara  brothers, 
having  plucked  golden  lotus  reached  the  peak  of  the 
Himalayas  through  the  sky.  Asokadatta  went  to  Vidyut- 
prabha who  also  having  been  liberated  from  curse  be- 
came a  Vidyadhara  girl.  With  that  beautiful  girl  the 
two  brothers  continued  their  journey  and  reached  Kasi 
where  they  bowed  before  their  parents.  That  reunion 
appeared  to  be  a  dream  or  something  nearing  madness 
to  their  parents.  They  could  not  believe  their  eyes. 
As'okadatta  and  Vijayadatta  each  saying  his  name  bowed 
before  them.  Their  parents  lifted  them  up  and  embraced 
them  and  kissed  them  on  the  head,  and  cried  for  joy. 
They  did  not  know  what  to  do  or  what  to  say.  Their 
minds  were  incapable  of  thinking.  Everybody  heard 
this  and  was  amazed  at  it.  The  King  was  also  filled 
with  joy.  He  came  there  and  took  them  to  the  palace. 
Asokadatta  gave  all  the  lotus  flowers  to  the  King,  who 
was  happy  and  joyful  at  the  achievement  of  more  than 
he  had  hoped  for.  Everybody  appreciated  them. 
Govindasvami,  in  the  presence  of  the  King  asked 
Vijayadatta  to  tell  his  story  from  the  moment  he  turned 
a  giant  in  the  burial-place;  "We  are  very  curious  to 
hear  it"  he  said.  Vijayadatta  began  to  say  "Father, 
you  have  seen  how  because  of  my  mischief,  I  had  brok- 
en that  skull  and  some  viscous  liquid  fell  into  my 
mouth  and  I  changed  to  a  giant.  After  that  the  other 
giants  gave  me  the  name  Kapalasphota.  They  invited 
me  into  their  midst.  We  lived  together.  After  a  few 
days  they  took  me  to  the  presence  of  the  King  of  the 
giants.  As  soon  as  he  saw  me  he  was  pleased  with  me 
and  appointed  me  as  the  commander-in-chief  of  the 
army.  He  who  was  overconfident  in  his  power  went  to 
war  with  the  Gandharvas  and  was  killed  in  the  fight. 
From  that  day  onwards  all  the  giants  came  under  my 
control.  Then  I  met  with  my  brother  who  came  to 
pluck  the  golden  lotus  flowers  from  my  lake.  With  this 
all  the  previous  conditions  of  my  life  had  vanished. 



My  brother  will  say  the  rest  of  the  story.  When  Vijaya- 
datta  had  finished  saying  Asokadatta  continued  the 

Long  ago  when  we  were  Yidyadharas  both  of  us  were 
going  through  the  sky  and  we  saw  the  hermit  maids 
of  the  hermitage  of  Galava,  bathing  in  the  Ganges.  We 
wished  to  get  those  girls.  The  hermits  who  saw  this 
with  their  divine  eyes  cursed  that  we  would  take  birth 
a*  men  and  in  that  birth  we  would  be  separated  in  a 
wonderful  way  and  both  of  us  would  unite  again  in  a 
place  where  man  could  not  reach  and  we  would 
DC  liberated  from  the  curse  and  learn  everything  from 
the  teacher,  and  would  become  the  old  Vidyadharas 
with  our  people.  And  according  to  this  curse  we  took 
birth  as  men  and  separation  was  effected.  You  all  have 
heard  it.  Today  I  went  to  the  lake  of  the  King  of  the 
giants,  with  the  help  of  my  mother-in-law  the  giantess 
for  plucking  the  golden  lotus  flowers  and  recovered  my 
brother,  this  Vijayadatta.  There  we  learned  everything 
from  our  teacher  Prajnapti  Kausika  and  became 
Vidyadharas  and  have  arrived  here  as  fast  as  we  could." 
Thus  he  informed  them  everything  that  had  occuired. 
Afterwards  by  the  learning  he  received  from  his  teacher 
he  changed  his  parents  and  the  daughter  of  the  King 
into  Vidyadharas  and  then  bidding  adieu  to  the  King 
Asokadatta,  with  his  two  wives,  parents  and  brother 
went  to  the  emperor  of  the  Vidyadharas  through  the 
sky.  When  they  reached  there  Asokadatta  and  Vijaya- 
datta changed  their  names  into  Asokavega  and  Vijaya- 
vega.  According  to  the  orders  of  the  emperor  those 
Vidyadhara  youths  went  to  the  mountain  of  Govinda- 
ku|a  with  their  people  as  it  was  their  abode,  and 
lived  with  happiness  and  joy.  King  Pratapamukuta 
with  wonder  took  one  of  the  golden  lotus  flowers  and 
placed  it  in  the  temple  and  with  the  rest  he  made 
oblations  to  god  and  considered  his  family  to  have 
made  wonderful  achievements.  ( Kathasaritsagara, 
Gaturdarikalamba,  Taraiiga  2) . 

ASOKASUNDARl.     See  the  word  Nahusa. 

ASOKATlRTHA.  A  holy  place  near  the  temple  of 
Surparaka.  (Mahabharata,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  88, 
Stanza  13). 

A§OKAVANIKA.  A  famous  park  in  Lanka.  It  was  in 
this  park  that  Ravana  kept  Sita  having  stolen  her  from 
Sri  Rama.  It  is  described  in  Valmiki  Ramayana, 
Sundarakanda,  Sarga  14  and  Aranyakanda,  Saiga  56 
and  in  Mahabharata  also  : — 

"Thinking  of  her  husband  alone,  clad  in  the  garments 
of  a  hermit  woman,  eating  only  roots  and  fruits,  in 
prayer  and  fast,  in  sorrow  and  sadness,  she  of  the  wide 
eyes  lived  in  the  Asoka  park  which  seemed  as  a  hermit- 
age." (Bhasa  Bharata,  Aranya  Parva  Chapter  280 
Stanzas  42  and  43) . 

ASTABANDHA.  A  kind  of  plaster  used  for  fixing  idols 
in  temples.  The  following  eight  things  are  mixed  and 
ground  consecutively  for  fortyone  days  and  made  ready 
to  be  put  in  the  cavity  around  the  idol  when  it  is  fixed 
there  finally,  (1)  conch-powder  (2)  powdered  myro- 
balam  (3)  resin  (4)  Kolipparal  (a  kind  of  rock)  (5) 
river  sand  (6)  powder  of  emblic  myrobalam  (7)  lac 
and  (8)  cotton. 

ASTABHARYA(S).     The   eight  wives  of  Sri  Krsna.   (1 ) 
Rukmini    (2)  Jambavati  (3)    Satya  bhama  (4)"kalindi 

(5)    Mitravinda    (6)   Satya   (7)   Bhadra  and  (8)  Lak- 


ASTABUDDHIGUNA  (S) .  Eight  qualities  of  the  intel- 
lect. Susrusa,  Sravana,  Grahana,  Dharana,  Cha,  Apoha, 
Arthavijnana,  and  Tattvajnana. 

ASTACURNA.  A  mixture  of  eight  powders.  The  eight 
things  are  :  Cukku  (dry  ginger),  Mulaku  (chilli) 
Tippali  (long  pepper)  Ayamodaka  (celery  seed)  Jlraka 
(baraway  seed)  Karirhjiraka  (black  caraway  seed) 
Intuppu  (sodium  chloride)  and  Kayam  (asafoetida). 

ASTADASAPURANA  (S) .  The  eighteen  puranas.  See 
under  Purana. 

ASTADH  ARMAMARGA(  S) .  Eight  ways  of  attaining 
moksa  :  Yaga,  Vedabhyasa,  Dana,  Tapas,  Satya,  Ksama, 
Daya,  lack  of  desire. 

ASTADH ATU  (S).  Eight  minerals  :  gold,  silver,  copper, 
tin,  zinc,  black  lead,  iron  and  mercury. 

ASTADIGGAJAS  and  ASTADIKKARlNlS.     There  are 
eight  male  and  eight  female    elephants    standing  guard 
over  the  eight  zones.  They  are  : 
Zone  Male  Female 

East  Airavata  Abhramu 

South-east  Pundarika  Kapila 

South  Vamana  Pirigala 

South-west  Kumuda  Anupama 

West  Anjana  Tamrakarm 

North-west  Puspadanta  SubhradantI 

North  Sarvabhauma  Angana 

North-east  Supra  tika  Aftjanavati 


Besides  these,  there  are  four  diggajas  (elephants  of  the 
universe)  who  bear  the  earth  standing  below  in  the 
nether  world.  It  is  stated  that  the  sons  of  Sagara  who 
went  into  the  nether  land  in  search  of  the  lost  horse  of  his 
father  saw  these  elephants.  As  they  went  to  the  east 
they  saw  the  huge  elephant  Virupaksa,  holding  the 
earth  on  its  head.  It  is  said  an  earthquake  occurs  when 
for  a  change  it  shakes  its  head.  Going  to  the  left  of  it 
they  saw  the  elephant  Mahapadmasama  holding  the 
earth  on  its  head  on  the  south.  Going  again  to  the  left 
of  it  they  saw  Saumanasa  holding  the  earth  on  its  head 
on  the  west  and  going  to  the  left  of  it  on  the  north 
they  saw  Bhadra  holding  the  earth  on  its  head.  (Val- 
miki Ramayana,  Balakanda,  Sarga  40). 

ASTADIK(S).  '  (Eight  zones) .  East,  South-east,  South, 
South-west,  West,  North-west,  North  and  North-east. 

ASTADIKPALAKA(S).  The  Devi  Bhagavata  states  like 
this  about  the  eight  zones  and  their  guardians.  Situated 
in  the  eight  different  zones  of  the  Brahmaloka  are  eight 
big  cities  of  the  eight  guardians  of  these  zones  each 
covering  an  area  of  2500  yojanas.  All  these  are  on  the 
top  of  Maharneru  and  Brahma  sits  in  the  centre  in  his 
city  called  Manovatl.  Around  his  city  are  the  others  as 
follows  : 

(1)  On  the  east  is  AmaravatI,  city  of  Indra. 

(2)  On  South-east  is  TejovatI,  city  ofAgni. 

(3)  On  the  South  is  SariiyamanT,  cityofYama. 

(4)  On  the  South-west  is  Krsnanjana,  city  of  Nirrti. 

(5)  On  the  West  is  Sraddhavati,  city  of  Varuna. 

(6)  On  the  North-west  is  Gandhavati,  city  of  Vayu. 

(7)  On  the  North  is  Mahodaya,  city  of  Kubera. 

(8)  On  the  North-east  is  YaSovatl,  city  of  Siva. 

(Astama   Skandha,  Devi   Bhagavata). 
ASTADRAVYA(S).  Eight  substances  of  great   medicinal 


(1)  Arayal,  (Asvattha— Fig  tree)  (2)  Atti  (Udumbara— 
Keg  tree)    (3)    Plasu  (Palasa — Downy    branch  butea) 
(4)   Peral   (Vata-Banyan  tree)     (5)  Camata    (6)    Ellu 
(Sesame)  (7)  Vayasa (Krsnaguru  cedar  tree  (8)  Ghee. 

ASTADUTAGUNA(S).  The  eight  qualities  of  a  good 
messenger.  (1)  He  should  not  stand  perplexed  when 
he  is  being  given  the  message  to  carry.  (2)  He  must 
be  smart  and  enthusiastic.  (3)  He  must  have  compas- 
sion for  those  in  distress.  (4)  He  must  run  his  errand 
quickly.  (5)  He  must  be  mild.  (6)  He  should  not  be 
duped  by  the  cunning  words  of  others.  (7)  He  must 
be  healthy.  (8)  He  must  be  able  to  talk  convincingly. 

ASTAGANDHA.  Akil  (Eaglewood),  Candana  (Sandal), 
Guggulu  (Indian  Bdellium),  Manci  (JatamamsI-Spi- 
kenard)  Kuiikuma  (saffron) ,  Kofta(Kustta-bostus  root), 
Ramacca  (Usiram-Sweet  rush),  Iruveli  (Valaka). 

( Ayurveda) 

ASTAGUNA  (S) .  (1)  Bhutadaya,  Ksama,  Anasuya, 
Gaurava,  Anayasa,  Marigala,  Akarpanya  and  Asprha. 

(2)  Buddhibala,  Kulasuddhi,  Sama,  Learning,    Para- 
krama,  Mitabhasana,  Dana  and  Krtajnata. 

(3)  Absence   of  Jealousy,  Rjutva,    Sucitva,    Santosa, 
Bhasanabharigi,  Sama,  Satya,   Sthairya. 

ASTAJIHVA.  One  of  the  soldiers  of  Skanda  Deva. 
(Sloka  62,  Chapter  45,  Salya  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ASTAKA.     See  under  Astika. 

ASfAKA  I.     A  King  of  the  Puru   dyansty. 

Genealogy.     Descended  in  order  from  Visnu  as  follows  : 

Brahma- Atri-Candra  -  Budha-Pururavas-Ayus-Nahusa- 

Yayati-Puru-Janamejaya-Pracinva  -  Pravira  -Namasyu- 

Vitabhaya  -  Sundu  -  Bahuvidha  -  Sarhyati  -  Rahovadi- 

Raudrasva-  Matinara  -  Santurodha-Dusyanta-Bharata- 


(This  Astaka  was  the  brother  of  Sunassepha). 

ASTAKA  II.  A  Rajarsi  born  to  Visvamitra  of  Madhavi, 
wife  of  Yayati.  (Sloka  18,  Chapter  119,  Udyoga  Parva, 
M.B.) .  See  under  Galava. 

1 )  How  Aftaka  went  to  heaven.  This  story  was  told  to 
the  Panda vas  by  the  sage  Markandeya. 
"Astaka,  son  of  Visvamitra,  performed  an  AsVamedha 
Yaga.  All  the  kings  took  part  in  this.  Piatardana, 
Vasumanas  and  Ausinara  Sibi,  and  all  the  brothers  of 
Asfaka  attended  the  function.  After  the  yaga  Astaka 
took  his  three  brothers  for  an  air  travel  and  on  the  way 
met  the  great  sage  Narada.  Narada  was  also  taken  in 
and  as  they  continued  their  flight.  Astaka  asked  Narada 
who  should  step  down  from  the  aeroplane  if  only  four 
were  allowed  to  go  to  heaven.  "Astaka",  replied  Narada 
and  explained  the  reason  also.  Once  when  Narada 
stayed  at  the  asrama  of  Astaka  the  former  found  many 
varieties  of  cows  there  and  asked  Astaka  whose  they 
were.  Then  in  self  praise  Asjaka  had  said  that  all 
those  were  cows  which  he  had  given  away  as  gifts. 
Astaka  then  asked  who  should  get  down  if  only  three 
were  allowed  to  go  to  heaven.  'Pratardana',  said 
Narada  and  explained  the  reason.  Once  when 
Pratardana  was  taking  Narada  in  the  former's  chariot 
four  brahmins  one  behind  the  other  approached  him 
and  begged  for  a  horse  each.  When  Pratardana  asked 
for  some  time  the  brahmins  were  not  prepared  to  wait 
and  so  he  gave  all  but  one  of  his  four  horses  and  asked 
the  fourth  to  wait.  As  he  was  also  found  to  be  persistent 
he  gave  the  one  drawing  his  chariot  also  and  dragged  the 
chariot  himself  but  abusing  the  brahmins  all  the  way.  It 
was  that  abuse  that  gave  him  the  slur.  Then  Astaka  asked 


Narada  who  should  get  down  if  only  two  were  permitted  to 
enter  heaven.  'Vasumanas',  said  Narada  and  explained 
the  reason.  Narada  went  to  the  house  of  Vasumanas 
three  times  and  each  time  the  latter  spoke  highly  of  his 
chariot.  Narada  also  joined  in  praising  his  flower-cha- 
riot and  the  brahmins  present  theie  also  followed  suit. 
Pleased  at  this  Vasumanas  became  proud  of  his  possession 
and  his  vainglorious  talks  made  him  unfit.  Then  Astaka 
asked  if  only  one  were  allowed  to  go  to  heaven  who 
should  go.  'Sibi',  said  Narada  immediately.  Even  Narada 
would  be  only  next  to  Sibi  and  Narada  explained  the 
reason  thus.  Once  a  brahmin  went  to  Sibi  for  food.  Sibi 
asked  him  what  food  he  relished  most  and  the  brahmin 
said  that  he  would  like  to  have  the  fresh  flesh  of  Sibi's 
only  son,  Brhadgarbha.  Without  even  the  slightest  hesi- 
tation Sibi  killed  his  son  and  cooked  his  flesh  and  when 
the  food  was  ready  he  went  out  to  invite  the  brahmin. 
But  on  going  out  the  King  saw  the  brahmin  setting 
fire  to  his  palace,  treasury,  armoury,  stables,  harem  and 
elephant-sheds.  Without  even  a  quiver  on  his  face,  the 
king  respectfully  took  the  brahmin  inside  and  gave  him 
food.  The  brahmin  was  amazed  at  the  patience  of  the 
King  and  sitting  before  his  food  for  some  time  told  the 
King  that  he  would  be  satisfied  if  the  King  himself  ate 
that  food.  Respecting  the  request  the  King  was  about  to 
eat  the  flesh  of  his  own  son  when  the  brahmin  who  was 
none  other  than  Brahma  in  disguise  praised  him  for 
his  devotion  and  gave  him  back  his  son  adorned  with 
sweet  smelling  flowers  and  disappeared  blessing  them. 
When  his  ministers  questioned  him  about  this  Sibi  said, 
"I  do  not  give  for  a  name  or  fame.  Neither  do  I  give 
for  wealth  and  happiness.  I  do  it  because  it  is  the  only 
way  to  be  rid  of  sins".  (Chapter  168,  Aranya  Parva, 

2)   Other  details.     (1)   Astaka  was   a  Rajarsi.   (Sloka  5, 
Chapter  86,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

(2)  Astaka    gave    away   all    the  punya    (goodness)  he 
earned  to  Yayati.    See    under  Yayati.  (Slokas  13  &  14, 
Chapter  122,  Udyoga  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASTAKALASYA.  This  is  a  gesture  in  the  Kathakali 
dance.  In  the  play  'Kalyanasaugandhika'  the  character 
of  Hanumana  and  in  the  play  'Kalakeyavadha'  the 
character  of  Arjuna  do  enact  this.  Increasing  step  by 
step  the  gesture  takes  eight  forms  in  combination  be- 
fore it  is  finished  accompanied  by  background  drum- 
ming and  music.  (Kathakali) . 

ASTAKAPALAM.  Purodasa  prepared  out  of  eight 
Kapalas.  (Sloka  24,  Chapter  221,  Sand  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASTAKARANA(S).  Manas  (mind),  Buddhi  (intelli- 
gence), Citta  (thought),  Aharhkara (egotism ),  Sariikalpa 
in  the  mind  (imagination) ,  determination,  pride  from 
egotism  and  Avadharana  in  Citta. 

ASTAKASTA(S).  Kama  (lust),  Krodha  (anger),  Lobha 
(greed),  Moha  (delusion),  Mada  (arrogance),  Mat- 
sarya  (rivalry),  Dambha  (pride)  and  Asuya  (jealousy). 

ASTAKOPAVYASANA  (S) .     (1)    Paisunya    (2)     Sahasa 

(3)  Droha    (5)     Irsya     (5)     Asuya     (6)    Arthadusana 
(7)  Vagdanda  and  (8)   Parusya. 

ASTAKUMBHA(S).  Suryabheda,  Ujjayl,  Silkkarl, 
Sitall,  Bhastika,  Bhramarl,  Murccha  and  Plavinl.  All 
these  have  to  be  practised  by  students  of  Yoga.  (Moksa- 
pradTpam) . 

ASTALOHA(  S) .     Eight  metals. 

1.  Suvarnam  Gold. 

2.  Rajatam  Silver. 




3.  Tamram 

4.  S.sakam 

5.  Kantikam 

6.  Varhsam 

7.  Lauham 


Vangarn — Tiu. 
Iron.  , 

8.  Tiksnalauham    Steel. 

ASTAMANGALA.'Brahmins,  bow,  Fire,  gold,  ghee,  Sun, 
water  arid  Kim>,. 

ASTAMANG  \LYA.  ( 1 )  Kurava  (2)  Darpana  (3)D:Pa 
(4)  KalaiU  (5)  Vastra  (6)  Aksatam  (7)  Arigana 
( 8)  Svarna 

ASTAMANOGUNA  (S) .  (1)  Paratva  (2)  Aparatva  (3) 
Sarhkhya  (4)  Parimana  (5)  Prthakta  (6)  Sam-yoga 
(7)  Vibhaga  (8)  Vega.' 

ASTAMANTRl(S).  The  eight  ministers  of  the  kings  of 
I  ksvaku  dynasty  are:  (1)  Jayanta  (2)  Drsti  (3)Vijaya 
(4)  Siddhartha  (5)  Arthasadhaka  (6)  Asoka 
(7)  Mantrapala  (8)  Sumantra. 

ASTAMARGAS.  Samyagdrsti,  Samyaksankalpa,  Samyag- 
vak,  Samyakkarma,  Samyagajiva,  Samyagvyayama, 
Samyaksm.-ti  and  Samyaksamadhi.The  Buddha  Sannya- 
sins  have  to  live  according  to  these  eight  directives  of 

ASTAMBA(S).     See  the  sixth  Khandika  under  Devi. 

ASTAMl.  The  third  skandha  of  Devi  Bhagavata  states 
that  the  goddess,  BhadrakalT,  came  into  life  on  an 
AstamI  day  to  block  up  the  yaga  of  Daksa.  That  is 
why  the  day  is  considered  to  be  holy  and  important. 

ASTAMCRTI(S) .  Earth,  Water,  Air,  Fire,  Ether,  Hota, 
Sun  and  Moon. 

ASTANAGA(S).  Eight  snakes.  Vasuki;  Taksa,  Karko- 
taka,  Sarhkha,  Gulika,  Padma,  Mahapadma  and 

ASTANGAHRDAYA.  The  medical  science  which  deals 
in  eight  separate  division  the  treatment  of  the  human 
body.  (1)  Sarlra  (2)  Bala  (3)  Graha  (4)  Urddhva- 
nga  (5)  Salya  (6)  Darhsfra  (7)  Jara  and  (8)  Vrsa. 
Bala — Body  which  has  not  attained  maturity;  Graha — 
External  elements  which  damage  the  health  of  infants; 
Salya — extraneous  substance  lodged  in  the  body;  Vrsa — 
The  seminal  fluid.  (Directions  of  treatment). 

ASTANGAYOGA(S).     Yama,    Niyama,  Asana,    Prana- 
yama,  Pratyahara,  Dhyana,  Dharana  and  Samadhi. 
1 )  Yama.     That    which  prevents    the  yogis  from  doing 
prohibited    thing*.     Ahirhsa,    Satya,  Asteya,  Brahma- 
carya  and  Aparigraha  are  yamas. 

2)  Niyama.     Actions  leading  to  Moksa.  They   are  : 

(1)  SAUCA — Cleanliness  of  the  mind— cleaning  it  of 
such  bad  qualities  like  jealousy.  (2)  TAPAS — indiffe- 
rence (Samatvabhava)  to  the  pairs  of  opposites  like 
pleasure  and  pain,  heat  and  cold  etc.  (3)  Svadhyaya 
— pursuit  of  the  science  of  salvation  chanting  of  OM. 

(4)  SANTOSA— remaining    happy     and    contented. 

(5)  ISVARA-'PRAI^IDHANA— surrendering     all    ac- 
tions to  God. 

3)  Asana.  Postures  of  sitting  firmly  and  comfortably.  Of 
the  many    asarias  the  very  prominent  ones  are  :  Svasti- 
kasana,  Virasana,  Padmasana,  Siddhasana,  Vastrasana, 
Vyaghracarmasana,  Valkalasana,  Kusasana,  Krsnasana, 
Vistarasani,    Mayurasana  and   Kurmasana.    Of   these 
Siddhasana  is  considered  to  be  the  best  of  the  lot.  This 
asana  strengthens  the  72,000  nerves  of  the  human  system 
and  all  the  yogis   prefer  this  to  any  other.  "Kimanyaih 
bahubhih  pUhaih  pi  the  Siddhasane  sad"    (of  what  use 
are  the  others  when  there  is  Siddhasana) . 

4)  Pranaydma.  Control  of  Prana  (Prana  is  the  life  giving 
breath  and  ayama  is  the  checking  of  it) .  Select  an  airy 
place  and  be  seated  in  an  ordinary  asana    facing  north 
or  east  after  taking  your  early  morning  bath.  Sit  erect 
with  your  breast  slightly  pushed  forward  and  your  head 
slightly    drawn    back.  Then    complete  one  Pranayama 
doing  Puraka,  Kumbhaka  and  Recaka.   The  Rudraya- 
niala  states  thus  about  Pran'tyama. 
Daksaugusthena  claksaih  ca. 

Ghranam  sarhpidya  mantravit 
Idaya  purayedvayuih 
Matra    sotlasabhih  kramat 
Dhrtva  nasadvayaiii  tatah 
Tatastu    kampayedvayum  caturganaih 
Anamaya  t.ttha  vama- 
Nasarn  dhrtva  tu  daksine 
Dvatrimsadbhistu  matrabhir 

Closing  the  right  nostril  by  the  thumb  of  the  right 
hand  and  inhaling  air  inside  through  the  left  nostril 
taking  16  seconds  is  called  Puraka.  Closing  the  nostiils 
by  the  thumb  and  ring-finger  arid  keeping  the  breath 
for  64  seconds  is  called  Kumbhaka.  Closing  the  left 
nostril  well  and  then  exhaling  through  the  right  nost- 
ril taking  32  seconds  is  called  Recaka.  Purakas  should 
be  done  through  the  same  nostril  through  which  you 
have  done  Recaka.  (You  must  do  at  least  ten  Prana- 
yamas  at  a  time) . 

5)  Pralydhara.     Withdrawing   the  mind  from   worldly 
objects  and  sensuous  pleasures. 

6)  Dhyana.  Keeping  your  mind  fixed  on  the  tip  of  your 
nose.  Meditation. 

7)  Dharana. Steadily  thinking  of  things  you  should  know. 

8)  Samadhi.    The  union  of  mind  with  God.   This    is  a 
blissful  superconscious  state  in  which  one  perceives  the 
identity  of  the    individualised  soul    and  cosmic   spirit. 

ASTAPRAMAl^AS.  Eight  means  of  getting  correct  know- 
ledge. Pratyaksa,  Anumana,  Upamana,  Sabda  (Agama) , 
Arthapatti,  Anupalabdhi  (Abhava)  Sambhava,  Aitihya. 

ASTARAGADIS.  Raga,  Dvesa,  Kama,  Krodha,  Lobha, 
Moha,  Mada  and  Matsarya  ( Raga — Desire  for  sensuous 
pleasures.  Dvesa — Desire  to  seek  vengeance  on  those  who 
have  offended  you.  Kama — Desire  for  worldly  posses- 
sions. Krodha — Anger,  Lobha — Miserliness.  Moha — 
Delusion.  Mada — Pride.  Matsarya — Jealousy. 

ASTATARANl.  Eight  names  of  Taranidevi.  They  are  : 
Tara,  Ugra,  Mahogra,  Vajra,  Kali,  Sarasvati,  Kames- 
varl  and  Camunda. 


1)  Birth.  The  sage  Uddalaka  had  a  disciple  named 
Khagodara  (Kahodara)  and  a  daughter  named  Sujata. 
Appreciating  the  devotion  and  good  conduct  of  his 
disciple,  Uddalaka  gave  his  daughter  Sujata  in  marri- 
age to  him.  Sujata  became  pregnant.  When  once 
Khagodara  was  reciting  from  the  Vedas  the  babe  in  the 
womb  of  Sujata  said,  "I  have  learnt  the  mantra  you 
are  chanting  but  the  way  you  chant  it  is  wrong".  (The 
vibrations  of  sound  created  by  the  utterance  of  each 
word  is  important) .  Khagodara  was  angry  and  he  curs- 
ed his  babe  in  the  womb  thus  "Since  your  mind  seems 
to  be  crooked  let  your  body  also  be  of  that  type,  with 


curves  all  over".  When  Sujata  delivered  the  child  it 
had  eight  bends  and  light  curves  and  so  the  boy  was 
named  Astavakra,  meaning  one  with  eight  bends. 
(Chapter  132,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 

2 )  Father  died  before  he  was  born.  When  Sujata  was  preg- 
nant they  suffered    much  from  poverty    and    at  the  in- 
sistence of  Sujata,  Khagodara  went  to  the  King  Janaka, 
to  beg  for  some  money.  Janaka  was    performing  a  yaga 
then  and  so  Khagodara  had  to  wait.    When  at  last   he 
went  to  the  royal    assembly  he  was  asked  to   enter  into 
a  polemical  contest  with  Vandina,  the  court  scholar  and 
having  been  defeated  by  him  was  asked  to   drown  him- 

Uddalaka  got  a  son  named  Svetaketu  and  Sujata  deli- 
vered Astavakra.  Both  the  boys  grew  in  the  asrama 
on  great  intimacy  and  Sujata  withheld  the  news  of  the 
death  of  her  husband  from  the  boys.  (Chapter  132, 
Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 

3)  How  Khagodara  was  got  back.     One  day  the  two  boys 
went    to  bathe    in  the   river  and  during  a  controversial 
talk  Svetaketu  said  that  Astavakra  had  no  father.  This 
teased   him   much   and  Astavakra    went  to  his  mother 
and  gathered  all  the  facts  about    his   father.  He   went, 
then,    straight    to    the    royal  assembly  of  King  Janaka. 
He  was  not  allowed  inside.  The  gate  keeper  said  that  he 
was   only  a  boy   and  only  learned  men  could  go  inside 
the  sacrificial  hall.  Astavakra    contended   that   neither 
size  nor  age  was  any   indication  of  one's  knowledge   or 
worth   and   got   himself  admitted   into  the  hall.  There 
he  entered  into  a  polemical  contest  with  the  same  court 
scholar,  Vandina,  who  had  killed  his    father.   Vandina 
was   defeated   and   was  thrown    into  the  same  river  in 
which  his  father  had   drowned   himself.    The   moment 
Vandina     fell    into     the   river     Khagodara     rose    up 
from  there  and  the  father   and  son    along   with    Sveta- 
ketu returned  to  the  asrama.  Khagodara  then  took  his 
son  for  a  bath  and  when  it  was  over  Astavakra  became 
a   bright   boy   without   crooks.     (Chapter    133,    Vana 
Parva,  M.B.) 

4)  Marriage.  Astavakra  wanted  to  marry  Suprabha,  the 
daughter  of  a  sage  named  Vadanya.  When  Vadanya  was 
approached    for   this   the    Sage  decided  to  test  the  love 
which  Astavakra  had  towards  his  daughter  and  said:  "I 
am  going  to  test  you.  You  go  to  the  north  to  the  Hima- 
layas. Pay  homage  to  Siva  and  Parvatl  and  go  further 
north.  There  you  will  find  a  very  beautiful  damsel.  You 
talk  to  her  and  return  and  when  you  come  back  I  shall 
give  you  my  daughter." 

Accepting  this  challenge  Astavakra  went  north.  When 
he  went  to  the  Himalayas  Kubera  entertained  him.  He 
remained  there  for  a  year  enjoying  the  dances  of  celes- 
tial maidens  and  then,  after  worshipping  Siva  and 
Parvatl  went  further  north.  There  he  came  across  seven 
very  attractive  women.  At  the  command  of  Astavakra 
the  eldest  of  the  lot,  Uttara,  remained  with  him;  all  the 
rest  left  the  place  immediately  she  started  making  love 
with  him  and  requested  him  to  marry  her.  But  Asta- 
vakra did  not  yield  and  told  her  about  his  promise  to 
Vadanya.  Pleased  at  this  reply  Uttara  revealed  that  she 
was  the  queen  of  the  north  in  disguise  and  was  testing 
him.  She  then  blessed  Asfavakra  who  fulfilling  his 
mission  successfully,  returned  and  married  the  girl  he 
wanted.  (Chapter  19,  AnuSasana  Parva,  M.B.). 

5)  Another  version  of  how  the  body  became  crooked.     There 
is  another  story  also  about  Astavakra.  Once  there  lived 



a  sage  named  Asita.  He  did  great  penance  to  please  Siva 
to  bless  him  with  a  child.  Siva  blessed  him  and  he  got  a 
son  named  Devala.  Rambha,  the  queen  of  devaloka,  fell 
in  love  with  him  but  Devala  did  not  yield  to  her  wishes. 
Then  Rambha  cursed  him  and  made  him  into  one  with 
eight  crooks.  Thus  Devala  came  to  be  called  Astavakra. 
He  then  did  penance  for  six  thousand  years  and  Bhaga- 
van  Krsna  accompanied  by  Radha  appeared  before  hun. 
Radha  was  shocked  by  the  ugliness  of  the  sage  and  did 
not  relish  his  sight.  But  Krsna  asking  her  to  remain 
quiet  went  and  embraced  him.  At  once  Astavakra  lost 
all  his  crooks  and  became  a  beautiful  man.  At  that  time 
a  chariot  descended  from  heaven  and  all  of  them  went 
to  heaven  in  it.  (Brahmavaivartta  Purana) . 
6)  Other  information.  (1)  Astavakra  was  also  present 
among  the  rsis  who  partook  in  the  coronation  ceremony 
conducted  after  Rama's  return  to  Ayodhya  from  Larika. 
( Uttararamayana) . 

(2)  Astavakra  cursed  those  celestial  maidens  who  re- 
buked him  for  his  ugliness  and  they  were  born  on  earth 
as  the  wives  of  Sri  Krsna.  When  after  the  death  of 
Krsna  they  were  being  taken  by  Arjuna  to  the  north  they 
were  forcibly  taken  by  some  of  the  shepherds.  (Chapter 
15,  Agni  Purana). 

ASTAVAKRATIRTHA.     If  one  observes  complete  fasting 

for  twelve  days  doing  tarpana  in  this  sacred  pond    it    is 

.  said  that  he  gets  the  benefit   of  doing   of  Naramedha- 

yajna.  (Sloka  41,  Chapter  25,  Anusasana  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASTAVAKTRA.     See  under  Astavakra. 

ASTAVARGA(S).  Meda,  Mahameda,  Kakoli,  Ksirakakoli, 
jivaka,  Itavaka,  Rddhi,  Vi'ddhi  (These  are  used  in  infu- 
sions for  treating  rheumatism) . 


1)  Origin.     Ganadevatas    are    called    Astavasus.     They 
were  born  to  Dharmadeva  of  his  wife  Vasu,  daughter  of 
Daksa.  They  are  :  Dhara,  Dhruva,  Soma,  Ahar,  Anila, 
Anala,    Pratyusa   and    Prabhasa.     (Slokas    17  and    18, 
Chapter    66,    Adi  Parva,    M.B.).  There  is  a  version  in 
certain  puranas    that    the    Astavasus   are    the   sons  of 

Different  puranas  give  different  names  to  these  Asta- 
vasus. According  to  Visnu  Purana  they  are  :  Apa, 
Dhruva,  Soma,  Dharma,  Anila,  Anala,  Pratyusa  and 
Prabhasa.  (Chapter  15  of  AmSaml).  In  Bhagavata 
they  are  Drona,  Prana,  Dhruva,  Arka,  Agni,  Dosa, 
Vasu  and  Vibhavasu.  In  Harivarhsa  they  are  :  Akha, 
Dhara,  Dhruva,  Soma,  Anila,  Anala,  Pratyusa  and 
Prabhasa.  This  only  indicates  that  some  of  these  have 
two  or  more  names  for  them. 

2)  Curse  ofVasistha.     Once   the  Astavasus   were   enjoy- 
ing  a  picnic    with  their  wives  and  they  happened  to  go 
to  the    asrama  of   Vasistha.    One  of  the  wives  got  ena- 
moured  over    Nandini,    Vasistha's    beautiful   cow   and 
wanted  it.  The  Vasu  to  please  his  wife  took  the  cow  by 
force    and    left  the  place.  When  the  sage  found  his  cow 
missing   after  some    time  he    understood  by  his  divine 
powers  who  stole  the  cow  and   so   he  cursed    the   Asta- 
vasus saying  that  all  of  them  would  be  born  on  earth  as 
men.  The  Astavasus  were  greatly  worried  and  approach- 
ed the  sage  apologising  and  craving  for  pardon.  The  sage 
relaxed  the    curse  and  declared  that  their  life  on  earth 
would  be  only  for   a  very    short  time   maintaining  that 
the  particular  Vasu  who  committed  the  theft   would  live 
for  a  long  time  as  man.  It  was  this  Vasu,  Apa  (Dyau) 
who  was  born  as  Bhlsma. 


3)  Rebirth  of  Affavasus.     The  Astavasus  were  pondering 
over    the   curse    and    were    thinking  of  how  to  bear    it 
without  hardship  when  Garigadevi  appeared  before  them 
and  they  then  appealed  to   her:  "Devi,  if  you  become 
the  queen  on  earth  of  some  noble  King  we  shall  be  born 
as    your   sons    and  you   must  throw  us  into  the  river  as 
soon  as  we  are  born".  Gangadevi  accepted  their  request. 
Once    there   was    a  King    called  Pratipa  in  the  Candra 
dynasty.  One  day  when  this  ascetic    King  was  worship- 
ping Surya  on  the  banks  of  the  river  Gaiiga  a  beautiful 
damsel    arose    from  the    waters  and    sat    on    the    right 
thigh  of  the  King.  Surprised  the  King  told  her  thus,  "Oh 
beautiful    maiden,    who  are  you  ?  Do  you  realise    what 
unrighteous    thing  you   have  done  ?  I  am  not    one  who 
goes  after  women  and   it    was    a   bit    daring  of  you  to 
have    taken    me    as   a  beau.  Please  understand  that  the 
right  thigh  is  intended  for    a  daughter  and  daughter-in- 
law.    You  can    claim    this   right  when  you  become  the 
wife  of  my  son."  The  beautiful  girl  was  none  other  than 
Gangadevi  herself  and  she  disappeared  soon  on  receiving 
the  rebuke. 

Pratipa  got  a  son  named  Santanu  and  Gangadevi  be- 
came the  wife  of  Santanu.  (For  more  details  about  this 
see  under  Gaiiga).  When  Gangadevi  became  the  wife  of 
Santanu  she  made  a  condition  to  be  his  queen. 
"Whether  good  or  bad  you  should  not  obstruct  any 
action  of  mine.  You  must  never  give  me  any  opinion  of 
yours  on  any  matter.  You  must  obey  what  I  order.  If  at 
any  time  you  break  any  of  these  promises  I  will  leave 
you  that  instant." 

It  was  while  Gangadevi  was  living  on  earth  as  the  wife 
of  Santanu  that  the  Astavasus  were  born  to  her.  One 
after  the  other  she  threw  into  the  river  seven  sons  but 
when  she  was  about  to  throw  the  eighth  the  King 
objected  to  it  and  Ganga  disappeared  immediately.  That 
son  was  Bhisma,  who  was  none  other  than  Dyau  born 
on  earth  by  the  curse  of  Vasisfha.  All  the  others,  released 
from  the  curse,  went  to  heaven.  (More  details  under 

4)  A  missile  to  Bhisma.  When  Bhisma  had  to  fight  against 
his    guru,    ParaSurama,    the   Astavasus    gave   him    the 
missile,  Prasvapa.  (See  Amba)  (Slokasll  to  13,  Chapter 
183,  Udyoga  Parva,  M.B.) . 

5)  Sons  of  Astavasus.     The  sons  of  Apa,  the  first    of   the 
Vasus,  are  :  Vaitandha,  Srama,  Santa  and  Dhvani.  Kala, 
the  destroyer  of  all,  is  the  son  of  Dhruva.  Varcas  is  the 
son  of  Soma.  Dharma  got  of  his  wife  Manohari  five  sons 
Dravina,   Hutahavyavaha,    Sisira,  Prana    and    Varuna. 
Siva  was  Anila's    wife  and  she  got  two  sons,  Manojava 
and    Avijnatagati.     Agni's    son    Kumara  was  born    at 
Sarastamba.  Kumara  got  three  brothers,  Sakha,  Visakha 
and     Naigameya.     Kumara    is    known    as    Karttikeya 
because   he    was  born  of  Krttikas.  The    sage,  Devala  is 
the  son  of  Pratyusa.  Devala  got  two  sons  of  great  intelli- 
gence and  forbearance.  Varastri,  sister   of  Brhaspati  and 
a  woman  of  great  yogic  powers  and    world-wide    travels 
became    the   wife   of  Prabhasa.    She   gave  birth  to  the 
famous  ViSvakarmaprajapati.  He  was  the  inventor  of  a 
great  many   handicrafts  and  ornaments    He  became  the 
consulting  architect  of  the  devas  and  ranked  first  in  that 
art.  The  aeroplanes  of  the  devas  were  designed    by  him. 
Men  on  earth  depend  on  his  art  even  now.  That    archi- 
tect   had    four   sons  :  Aj  ik.npat,   Ahirbudhnya,    Tvasfa 
and   Rudra,    the   bold.    The    great  ascetics,  VisVarupa, 
Hara,     Bahurupa,    Tryambaka,     Aparajita,    Vrsakapi, 


Sambhu,  Kapardi,  Raivata,  Mrgavyadha,  Sarva  and 
Kapali  were  the  sons  of  Tvasta.  These  are  known  as  the 
twelve  Rudns.  Puranas  say  that  there  are  a  hundred 
Rudrys  like  this.  (Chapter  15,  AmSa  1,  Visnu  Purana) . 
ASTAVIDHANAYIKA(S).  Eight  kinds  of  heroines  of 
the  stiige  : 

(1)  Svddhinapatikd.     Fit  to    be   a   counterpart   in  a  love 
scene  and  play  the  role  of  one  who  is  always  fondled  by 
her  husband. 

(2)  Vdsakasajjikd    (Vdsakasajjd).     Adorning   herself  well 
and  waiting   for  her  lover  in  a  well  decorated  bedroom. 

(3)  Virahotkan(hitd.  Exhausted  by  the  sorrow  of  separa- 
tion from  her  lover. 

(4)  Vipralabdhd.     Cheated    by   her   lover   after  fixing  a 
date  and  a  rendezvous. 

(5)  Khanditd.     Angered  at  the  arrival  of  the  husband  in 
the  early  hours  of  the  morning  with  suspicion    about  his 

(6)  Kalahdntarita.     Repenting    after   having   arrogantly 
disobeyed  her  husband. 

(7)  Prositabhartrkd.     One  who  has  gone  weak  and  moody 
thinking    about  her  husband  in  a  foreign  place. 

(8)  Abhisarika.     One  who  approaches  her  husband  with 
great  passion.    (Natyakrama) . 

Agni,  Air,  Ether,  Mind,  Intelligence  and  Egotism. 

ASTAVIDHAPRATIMA(S).  Silamayi,  Dhatumayi, 
Lohamayi,  Lepya,  Lekhya,  Mrnmayi,  Manimayi  and 

ASTAVIDHAKUSTHA(S).  Vimarccika,  Bhadiu,  Man- 
dala,  Sukti,  Siddhmaka,  Krsna,  Sukla  and  Taruna. 
(Astangahrdaya) . 

ASTAVIVAHA(S).  Eight  kinds  of  marriage.  (1)  Brahma 
(2)  Daiva  (3)  Arsa  (4)  Prajapatya  (5)  Gandharva 
(6)  Asura  (7)  Raksasa  (8)  Paisaca.  Brahma  is  the  one 
where  the  father  gives  her  daughter  with  sacred  water 
to  a  bachelor  without  accepting  anything  in  return.  When 
the  father  gives  his  daughter  to  the  priest  at  the  time 
of  a  yaga  it  is  called  Daiva.  It  is  Arsa  if  the  father  gives 
the  daughter  and  gets  in  return  a  cow  or  bullock.  When 
the  father  gives  the  daughter  with  her  blessings  it  is 
Prajapatya.  The  marriage  between  two  lovers  is  Gan- 
dharva. It  is  Asura  when  the  male  takes  his  mate  by 
force  and  it  is  PaiSacika  (most  cruel  and  mean)  when 
the  girl  is  taken  as  his  wife  when  she  is  in  a  state  of 

ASTAYOGINl(S).  The  eight  hermit-maidens  who  are  the 
attendants  of  the  goddess,  Durga.  (1)  Marjjati  (2) 
Karpuratilaka  (3)  Malayagandhini  (4)  Kaumudika 
(5)  Bherunda(6)  Matali  (7)  Nayaki  (8)  Jaya  (Subha- 
cara ) . 

ASTOPAYA(S).  Eight  ways  of  attaining  salvation. 
Yajfla,  Dana,  Vedadhyayana,  Tapas,  Dama,  Satya, 
RjuSila,  and  Mardava.  These  are  the  qualities  requir- 
ed for  attaining  salvation. 

ASTl.  Daughter  of  Jarasandha,  King  of  Magadha. 
Karhsa  married  Asti  and  also  another  daughter  of  Jara- 
sandha. (Slokas  29  to  32,  Chapter  14,  Sabha  Parva, 
M.B. ) .  Chapter  12  of  Agni  Purana  states  that  Jarasandha 
went  to  war  with  the  Yadavas  because  of  the  per- 
suasion of  these  daughters. 

ASTRA.  After  killing  the  demoness,  Tajaka,  Visvamitra 
reveals  to  Rama  and  Laksmana  the  secret  of  using  a 
great  many  varieties  of  Divyastras  (Divyastra  is  a  missile 




charged    with    power    by  holy  incantation) .    Some  of 
those  astras  are  named  below: 
1.     Dandacakra  2.     Dharmacakra 

3.     Kalacakra  4.     Visnucakra 

5.     Indracakra  6.     Vajrastra 

7.     Saivasula  8.     Aislka 

9.     Brahmasirastra         10.     Brahmastra 
11.     Modakisikharl  12.     Dharmapasa 

13.     Kalapasa  14.     Varunastra 

15.     Varunapasa  16.     Paramastra 

17.     Pinakastra  18.     Narayanastra 

19.     Agneyastra  20.     Sikharastra 

21.     Vayavyastra  22.     Prathanastra 

23.     Krauncastra  24.     HayaSsirastra 

25.     Kankalastra  26.     Musalastra 

27.    Kapalastra  28.     Karikanastra 

29.     Manavastra  30.     Prasthapanastra 

31.     Prasamanastra          32.     Saurastra 
33.     Varsanastra  34.     Sosanastra 

35.     Santapanastra  36.     Vilapanastra 

37.     Madanastra  38.     Mohastra 

39.     Saumanastra  40.     Samvartastra 

41.     Satyastra  42.     Mayadharastra 

43.     Tejaprabhastra         44.     Saumyastra 
45.     Sisirastra  46.     Tvasjastra 

47.     Sudamanastra 

Sri  Rama  received  all  these  astras  standing  facing  east. 
(Sarga  27,  Balakanda,  Valmiki  Ramayana) 
ASURA.  Those  born  to  Kasyapa  of  his  wife  Danu  are 
called  Danavas  and  those  born  of  his  wife  Dili  are  call- 
ed Daityas.  They  belong  to  the  demonaic  dynasty  (Re- 
fer under  'Asuravarhsa'  in  the  genealogy  chart) .  Re- 
nowned among  the  asuras  were  the  following : 
Prahlada,  Sarhhlada,  Anuhlada,  Sibi,  Baskala,  Virocana, 
Kumbha,  Nikumbha,  Bali,  Bana,  Mahakala,  Vipracitti, 
Sambara,  Namuci,  Puloma,  Visruta,  Asiloma,  KesI, 
Durjaya,  Ayassiras,  Asvassiras,  Asva,  Saiiku,  Mahabala, 
Garga,  Murdha,  Vegavan,  Ketuman,  Svarbhanu,  Asva- 
pati,  Vrsaparva,  Ajaka,  Asvagriva,  Suksma,  Tuhunda, 
Ekapad,  Ekacakra,  Vimpaksa,  Harahara,  Candra, 
Kupata,  Kapata,  Para,  Sarabha,  Salabha,  Surya  and 

ASURA.  One  of  the  eight  daughters  born  to  Kasyapa 
of  his  wife  Pradha.  (Sloka  41,  Chapter  65.  Adi  Parva, 

ASCRBANI  PAL.     ( See  under  Gilgamis,  Jalapralay a) . 
ASURTARAJASA.     A   son  born   to    King  Kusa  of  his 
wife    VaidarbhI.  Kusamba,    Kusanabha,  Asurtarajasa 
and  Vasu  are  the  four  sons  of  Kusa.    (Sarga  32,  Bala- 
kanda, Valmiki  Ramayana) . 

ASVA  I.    A  demon.  This  was  the  same  demon  who  later 
on  was  born  as  Asoka,  King  of  Kaliiiga.  (Chapter  67, 
Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 
A§VA  II.     A  maharsi.  The  sage  Vasa  is  the  son   of  this 

rsi.  (Sukta  1 12  of  Rgveda). 

ASVA  (Horse) .  Horses  and  camels  were  born,  in  this 
world,  of  Tamra,  wife  of  Kasyapa,  grandson  of  Brahma. 
(Agni  Purana,  Chapter  19). 

AlsVAGHOSA.  A  famous  Sanskrit  poet.  He  has  written 
many  Sanskrit  books  prominent  among  which  are 
the  two  great  poems,  Buddhacarita  and  Saundarananda 

and  a  drama  called  Sariputraprakarana.  He  lived  in 
the  2nd  Century  A.D.  His  history  of  Buddha  (Buddha- 
carita) was  translated  into  Chinese  during  the  period 
414  to  421  A.D.  He  was  known  under  the  following 
names  also:  Acarya,  Bhadanta,  Mahavadi  and  Bhiksu. 

AS"VAGRIVA.  Son  born  to  the  Sage,  Kasyapa  by  his 
wife,  Danu.  (Sloka  24,  Chapter  65,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ASVAHRDAYA.  A  mantra  (sacred  incantation)  for 
controlling  the  horse.  (See  under  'Aksahrdaya"). 

ASVAKETU.  Son  of  King  Gandhara.  He  fought  on  the 
side  of  the  Kauravas  and  was  killed  in  the  battle  by 
Abhimanyu.  (Sloka  7,  Chapter  48,  Drona  Parva,  M.B. ). 

ASVAKRTA.  A  river.  Once  a  sage  called  Rclka  went  to 
Gadhi  and  asked  for  the  hand  of  his  daughter,  Satya- 
vatl,  in  marriage.  He  demanded  as  dowry  a  thousand 
horses  black  in  colour  and  with  only  one  ear  for  each. 
Rclka  prayed  to  Varuna  and  he  gave  him  the  horses 
required.  The  river  Asvakrta  (created  by  horse)  was 
made  by  the  flow  of  urine  from  these  horses.  ( Chapter 
57,  Brahmanda  Purana) . 

A§VAMEDHA  I.  A  country  of  ancient  India  which  was 
ruled  by  a  King  named  Rocaman.  Bhlmasena  conquered 
him  during  the  world-wide  conquering  campaign. 
(Sloka  8,  Chapter  29,  Sabha  Parva) . 

ASVAMEDHA  II.  A  yaga.  Kings  used  to  conduct  this 
in  order  to  get  absolved  of  all  sins.  Fixing  a  victory 
card  on  the  head  of  a  horse  it  is  allowed  to  roam  about 
freely.  If  anybody  stops  the  horse  and  ties  it,  the  King 
should  go  and  defeat  him  in  battle  and  bring  back  the 
horse.  If  you  do  a  hundred  such  y'gas  you  can  become 

ASVAMEDHA.  Son  of  King  Sahasranlka  (Refer  under 
Sahasranlka) . 

ASVAMEDHADATTA.  Son  born  to  Satanlka  of  the 
princess  of  Videha.  (Sloka  86,  Chapter  95,  Adi  Parva, 

ASVAMEDHAPARVA.  A  parva  of  the  Mahabharta. 
See  under  Bharata. 

ASvANADl.  A  river  in  the  country  of  Kuntibhoja. 
AsvanadI  joins  CarmanvatI  and  the  latter  joins  the 
Yamuna  and  the  Yamuna  joining  Ganga  falls  into  the 
ocean.  It  was  through  this  river  that  Kuntldevi  floated 
in  a  box  the  infant  Karna.  At  night  accompanied  by 
her  maid,  Kunti  floated  the  box  containing  her  illegiti- 
mate son  and  stood  on  the  banks  of  AsvanadI  weeping 
bitterly.  Then  thinking  that  her  father  would  notice 
her  absence  from  the  palace  she  returned  home  soon. 
The  box  floated  and  reached  the  country,  Campapurl, 
ruled  by  a  charioteer.  (Slokas  22  to  26,  Chapter  308, 
Aranya  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASVARATHA.  A  river  in  the  Gandhamadana  valley 
flowing  near  the  Asrama  of  the  sage  Ars{i§ena.  Many 
kings  of  the  Candra  dynasty  used  to  come  and  stay  in 
this  asrama.  (Sloka  10,  Chapter  160,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ASVAS~A1SIKU.  Son  of  Kasyapa  born  of  his  wife  Danu. 
(Sloka  21,  Chapter  67,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASVAPATI  I.  Father  of  the  most  chaste  woman,  Savitri. 
He  was  King  of  Madra.  He  was  without  children  for  a 
long  period  and  for  eighteen  years  he  worshipped  the 
goddess,  Savitri  and  got  a  maiden  from  Agnihotra  whom 

*  Asvamedha_or  horse  sacrifice  was  performed  by  autocrats  to  establish  their  supreme  sovereignty.  For  this  the  horse  let  out  to  roam 
about  should  go  into  all  coutttries.  Those  who  opposed  the  sovereignty  of  the  King  could  stop  the  horse  and  tie  it.  Then  the  King  hatf 
to  defeat  him  before  conducting  the  yaga.  The  vedas  enjoin  that  the  sacrificial  horse  should  be  followed  by  a  hundred  young  men  ceadv 
to  fight  those  who  opposed  the  King.  Indra  had  conducted  a  hundred  such  yagas. 



he  named  as  Savitri.  For  more  details   sec  under  Savitri. 
(Chapter  293,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 

AaVAPATI  II.     The  son  born    to    Kasyapa  of  his    wife 
Danu.  (Sloka  24,  Chapter  65,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASVASENA.     A    serpent  which    lived    in    the  forest   of 
Khandava.    This    was  the   son  of  Taksaka  and  he  tried 
his   best   to    escape  from  the  fire   that  burnt  the  forest. 
(Sloka  5,  Chapter  239,  Adi  Parva;   M.B.) . 
Once  when  Arjuna  and  Kt?na  were  sitting  on  the  banks 
of  the  river  Yamuna,  Agni'approached  them  and  request- 
ed them  to  help  him  burn  the  forest    of  Khandava  (see 
under  Khandavadaha ) .    They  agreed  to  help  him  and 
Agni  started  burning  the  forest.  Indra  poured  rains  over 
the  fire;  Arjuna  created  a  canopy  of  arrows  and  prevent- 
ed   the    rains    from    falling    down.    Asvasena,    son    of 
Taksaka   tried   to  escape  from  the  fire  but  Arjuna  obs- 
tructed his    way    by    arrows.  Then  Asvasena's  mother 
swallowed  him  and  kept  him  in    her  stomach.    Arjuna 
cut    off  her    head.    Seeing  this  Indra  sent  a  cyclone  to 
smash    the    canopy    of  arrows  and    Arjuna  fell  fainting. 
Taking  the  opportunity  Asvasena  escaped.  When  Arjuna 
woke  up  from  his  unconscious  state  he    found   Asvasena 
missing.    Then   Arjuna  cursed  him  thus  :  "Let  not  you 
get  refuge  anywhere."  (Chapter  226,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 
Asvasena  kept    his  grudge    against  Arjuna  till  the  end. 
In  the   great   battle  Arjuna  and  Karna  met  for  a  fight 
and   when    Karna    sent    his    Nagastra  (serpent  missile) 
against    Arjuna,   Asvasena    hid   himself  in  that  missile 
and  burnt  the  beautiful  headwear  of  Arjuna.  But  Karna 
did  not    like    this  foul   play  and  refused  to  accept  him 
when  he  came  back.  Enraged  at  this  the  serpent  attacked 
Arjuna  directly  and  was  killed.  Before  his  death  he    got 
acquainted    with  Krsna.    (Chapter   96,    Karna    Parva, 

ASVASlRAS  I.  A  son  born  to  Kasyapa  of  Danu.  (Sloka 
23,  Chapter  65,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ASVASlRAS  II.  Bhagavan  Hayagriva  who  was  teaching 
the  Vedas  at  Vaihayasakunda  near  Naranarayanasrama. 
(Sloka  3,  Chapter  127,  Santi  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASVASlRASTHANA(M).  A  sacred  place  in  ancient 
India.  Arjuna  dreams  of  going  to  Siva  with  Krsna  and 
in  that  dream  they  visit  this  place  also.  (Chapter  80, 
Drona  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ASVATAKA.  A  country  of  ancient  India.  (Sloka  15, 
Chapter  51,  Bhisma  Parva,  M.B.). 

AS  VAT  AR  A.  A  serpent.  A  sacred  pond  built  in  Prayaga 
also  carries  this  name.  (Sloka  76,  Chapter  55,  Vana 
Parva  and  Sloka  10,  Chapter  35,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

ASVATlRTHA.  An  ancient  holy  place  on  the  banks  of 
the  river,  Ganges,  near  Kanauj.  It  was  at  this  place 
that  the  horses  rose  from  the  earth  at  the  request  of 
Rclka  Rsi  to  Varuna  (See  under  AsVakrta).  (Sloka 
17,  Chapter  4,  M.B.) 


1 )  Birth  and  genealogy.     The    semen    of  Bharadvaja  Rsi 
fell    into   the   hollow  of  a  bamboo  and   from  there  was 
born  Drona.  As  per  the  instructions  of  his  father  Drona 
married    Krpi,    daughter  of  the  sage,  Saradvata.    The 
good-natured    Krpi    gave    birth    to  Asvatthama.    (See 
under  Drona  for  genealogy).  (Chapter  130,  Adi  Parva, 

2 )  Ho:v  he  got  his  name.     The  moment  he  was    born  he 
made  a  loud  hoot  like  Uccaisravas  and  the  sound  resem- 
bled the  braying  of  a  horse.  Immediately  a  voice  from 
heaven  said  that  the  boy  should  be  named  As\  atthama. 

The  boy  was,  therefore,  named  so.  (Slokas  48  and  49, 
Chapter  130,  M.B.). 

3 )  Training  in  archer}!.     Asvatthama    took  his  lesson  in 
archery  from  his  father  Drona.  At  that  time  Drona  got 
new    lessons    from   Parasurama   and  they  were  also  im- 
parted to  Drona's  disciples.    When  Drona  became  the 
preceptor  of  the  Kauravas  and    Pandavas    Asvatthama 
also  went  with  him.  (Slokas  52  to  64,  Chapter  130,  Adi 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

4)  Drona's  affection  for  his  son.     Drona   was  very  affec- 
tionate   to   his  son  and  wanted  to  teach  him  something 
special  in  archery.  So  he  used  to  instruct    him    during 
the  time  the  other  disciples  went  to  fetch  water  for  the 
asrama.    Arjuna   came  to   know  of  this  and  he,  there- 
after,    started    bringing  his    quota   of   water  quickly 
enough  to  join  the  special  class  of  Drona.  Thus  Arjuna 
and  Asvatthama  leai  ned  a  lot  more  than  the  others  in 
the  military  art.    (Slokas    17-19,    Chapter    132,    Adi 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

5)  The   Mahdbharata  Battle  and  Asvatthama.     In  Sabha 
Parva  we  find  AsVatthama  participating  in  the    Raja- 
suya  of  Yudhisthira.  After  that  we  meet  him   only    at 
the  Kuruksetra  war.  Fighting  on  the  side  of  the  Kau- 
ravas he  played  a  very  important  role  in    that  war.  He 
killed  many  veteran    warriors  and  kings   including  the 
following  :    Nila,   Afijanaparva,     Suratha,  Satrunjaya, 
Balanika,Jayanika,  Jayasva,  Srutasva,  Hemamali,  Vtsa- 
dhara,Candrasena,  the  ten  sons  of  Kuntibhoja,  Sudar- 
sana,  Vrddhaksetra,  Cediraja,  Malayadhvaja  and  Sura- 
tha. He  defeated  many  including  Sikhanctt,  Abhimanyu, 
Virata,    Satyaki   and   Vindhya.    By   using   Agneyastra 
(the    arrow  of   fire)     he   made  Krsna  and  Arjuna  fall 
fainting  in  the  battle-field.  He  commanded  the  Kaurava 
army   once.    He   killed    many  Pancalas   and  Somakas 
while  they  were   sleeping.     In  Chapter  139  of  Drona 
Parva  we  read  about  Arjuna    defeating   Asvatthama  in 
a  single  combat   one  day. 

6)  Asvatthama  sees  a  ghost.  Dhrstadyumna,  son  of  King 
Pancala,   killed    Drona.    When    Asvatthama  heard  of 
his  father's  death  his  rage  knew  no  bound.  He   imme- 
diately went  to  the  heart    of  the    military  camp  of  the 
Pandavas,  Krpa  and  Satvata  following  him.  There  at  the 
gate  of  the  camp  he  beheld  a  ghostly  apparition.    It  is 
described  in  the  Bhasa  Bharata  ( Malayalam  version  of 
M.B. )  as  follows  :  He  saw  a  huge  figure  standing  at  the 
door  with  a   body  blazing  like  the  Sun  and  the   Moon. 
Bathed  in  blood    and  wearing  a  tiger's  skin  in  the  loins 
the  figure  wore  a  snake  as  his  sacred  thread  and  cover- 
ed his  upper  body  with  a  deer-skin.    There  were  innu- 
merable hands  for  this  ghost  and  in  each  hand  adorned 
with  snake-bangles   he   held   a  deadly  weapon.  With 
crooked   teeth   and  a   ghastly  face  the   goblin  gave   a 
shiver   to    those  who  saw   him.  Flames   bursting   forth 
from  his  eyes,  ears,  nose  and  mouth   he  barred  the  way 
of  Asvatthama.    Undaunted  the  son  of  Drona  showered 
divine  arrows  on  the  figure.    But  the  ghost  by  his   sup- 
reme   powers   absorbed    the   arrows   to   his    body   the 
moment   they   touched   him.     In   despair  Asvatthama 
meditated  on  Siva  and  the  latter  appearing  before  him 
in  person  gave  him  a  divine  dagger.  With  that  he  entered 
the   bed-chamber  of  Dhrstadyumna,  woke  him  up  by 
striking  him  with  his  foot,  caught  hold  of  him  by  the 
hair  on  his  head  and  killed  him. 

7)  Aivatlhama  and  his  jewel.  The  anger  of  Asvalthama  did 
not  abate  even  after  killing  Dhrsfadyumna,  the  butcher 



of  his  father.  With  a  view  to  destroying  the  whole  Pand- 
ava  dynasty  he  sent  against  the  Panda vas  the  all-power- 
ful Brahmasirastra  (a  missile  charged  with  great  power 
by  a  holy  incantation) .  But  Drona  had  given  the  same 
type  of  missile  to  Arjuna  also  and  so  he  sent  forth  his  to 
meet  the  other.  It  created  such  a  great  explosion  that 
all  the  elders  on  both  the  sides  joined  together  and  re- 
quested them  to  withdraw  the  missiles.  Arjuna  demanded 
the  jewel  on  AsVatthama's  head  to  withdraw  his  missile. 
But  Asvatthama  refused  to  part  with  it.  He  said,  "This 
jewel  of  mine  is  more  valuable  than  all  the  wealth  of  both 
Pandavas  and  Kauravas  put  together.  If  you  wear  this 
you  need  not  be  afraid  of  your  enemies,  disease,  hunger 
and  thirst.  No  harm  will  come  to  you  from  Yaksas, 
Nagas  or  thieves.  I  will  never  part  with  such  a  jewel1'. 
(Slokas  28-30,  M.B.,  Chapter  15,  Sautika  Parva).  After 
great  persuasion  Asvatthama  surrendered  his  jewel  but 
without  withdrawing  the  missile  directed  it  towards  the 
womb  of  Uttara  who  was  bearing  a  child  then.  We 
are  reminded  of  an  incident  which  happened  when 
the  Pandavas  were  residing  in  Upaplavya;  a  poor 
brahmin  looking  at  Uttara  said,  "When  the  Kauravas 
will  be  weakening  in  power  a  child  will  be  born  to  you. 
The  boy  will  have  to  bear  a  test  even  while  in  the 
womb  and  so  you  must  name  the  child  Parlksit  (One 
who  has  been  tested)". 

When  the  powerful  missile  was  flying  straight  towards 
Uttara's  womb  Sri  Krsna  said,  "Even  though  the  child 
in  the  womb  will  die  of  this  arrow  it  will  be  reborn. 
Oh,  Asvatthama,  you  will  be  denounced  by  all  as  a 
sinner  for  killing  this  unborn  babe.  To  suffer  for  this 
evil  deed  you  will  roam  about  in  the  earth  for  three 
thousand  years.  Nobody  will  associate  with  you;  you  will 
be  shunned  by  society.  You  will  be  tormented  by  all 
diseases  on  earth.  But  the  babe  which  you  have  now 
killed  will  be  a  famous  scholar  and  brave  King.  He  will 
rule  this  country  for  sixty  years.  He  will  be  known 
as  the  next  Kururaja.  Look,  I  am  giving  life  to  the  babe 
you  have  killed".  Vyasa  supported  Krsna,  and  Asvat- 
thama repenting  on  his  hasty  action  gave  the  jewel  to 
the  Pandavas  and  left  for  the  forest  with  Vyasa. 
(Sautika  Parva,  M.B.) . 

8)  Synonyms  of  Asvatthama.  The  Mahabharata  has  used 
the  following  names  also  for  AsVatthama.  Acaryanan- 
dana,  Acaryaputra,  Acaryasuta,  Acaryatanaya,  Acarya- 
sattama,  Drauni,  Draunayani,  Dronaputra,  Dronasunu, 
Guruputra,  Gurusuta  and  Bharatacaryaputra. 

ASVATTHAMA  II.  Indravarma,  King  of  Malava,  had 
an  elephant  of  this  name  and  it  was  killed  in  the  battle 
by  Bhlmasena.  (Sloka  15,  Chapter  190,  Drona  Parva, 
M.B.) . 

ASVAVATl.  A  river.  It  is  believed  that  if  one  just  thinks 
about  it  at  daybreak,  midday  and  sunset  one  will  get 
salvation.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  165,  Sloka 
25) . 

ASVAVAN.  The  first  child  of  King  Kuru.  (See  under 
genealogy  of'Kuru) .  His  mother  was  Vahini.  He  is  known 
as  Aviksit  also.  He  got  eight  sons  :  Pariksit,  Sabalasva, 
Adiraja,  Viraja,  Salmali,  Uccaihsravas,  Bhayankara 
and  Jitari.  (Slokas  50  to  53,  Chapter  94,  Adi  Parva, 

Dasra,  the  two  sons  of  Surya  (The  Sun)  are  called 
Asvianikumaras.  (Slokas  17  and  18,  Chapter  150,  Anu- 
sasana Parva,  M.B.).  They  are  also  known  as  Asvins, 

and  Asvirudevas.  These  two  are  the  physicians 
of  the  devas.  (Sloka  12,  Chapter  123,  Aranya  Parva, 
M.B) . 

1)  Genealogy.     Descending   from   Visnu    in  order    are  : 
Brahma,    Marlci,      Kasyapa,      Vivasvan     (the    Sun), 

2)  Birth.     The  Visnu  Purana   describes  the  birth  thus: 
"Samjna,    daughter   of  Visvakarma,    was    the  wife  of 
Surya.  She  got  three  children  :  Manu,  Yama  and  Yaml. 
Once    finding    the   effulgence  of  Surya  unbearable  she 
engaged  Chaya  to    look    after   Surya    and  left    for  the 
forests   to  do  penance    there.    Surya  took  Chaya  to  be 
Sarhjna    and   got    three  children    of  her  :  Sanaiscara, 
(another)  Manu  and  Tapati.  Once  Chaya    got    angry 
and    cursed  Yama.    It  was  then  that  Surya  and  Yama 
came  to  know  that  she  was  not   Samjna,  getting    more 
details  from  Chaya,  Surya  found  out  by  his  Jnanadrsti 
( a  power  of  sight    developed  by  Yoga   by    which  one 
could    see  things  far    beyond  the    limits    of  his  vision) 
that  Samjna  was  practising  austerities  taking  the  form  of 
a  mare.  Then  Surya  went  to    her  disguised  as  a  horse 
and  with  her  co-operation  produced  three    children  of 
which  the  first  two  became  known  as  A  svinikumaras.  The 
third  son  was  called  Revanta.  Then  Surya  took  Samjna 
to  his    place     (Chapter  2,    Amsa    3,    Visnu  Purana). 
Sloka  35  of  Chapter  66  of  Adi  Parva  states  that  Asvini- 
kumaras were  born  from  the   nose  of  Samjna. 

3 )  How  Asvinikumaras  tested  Sukanya.     The  Devi  Bhaga- 
vata   contains  a   story  of  how  the    Asvinikumaras  tested 
the  fidelity  of  Sukanya,  daughter  of  Saryati  and   made 
her  old  and  senile  husband  into  a  young  and  virile  one. 
Saryati,    son   of  Vaivasvata   manu,  had  four  thousand 
beautiful  princesses  as  wives.  But  none  had  any    child- 
ren. When  they  were    lamenting  over  this  misfortune 
one  of  the  wives  gave  birth  to  a  girl  and  she  was  called 
Sukanya.  The  father  and  all  his  wives  together  brought 
up  this  daughter  with  great  affection. 

In  the  neighbourhood  of  the  palace  of  Saryati  there  was 
a  tapovana  as  good  and  grand  as  Nandanavana  and  it 
contained  a  lake  similar  to  the  Manasa  lake.  In  one 
corner  of  this  tapovana  a  sage  named  Cyavana  was 
doing  penance.  He  had  been  sitting  there  for  so  long  a 
period  without  food  meditating  on  a  goddess  that  he  was 
covered  with  plants  and  shrubs  had  grown  over  him.  He 
was  unaware  of  the  growth  around  him.  Once  at  this 
time  Saryati  with  his  wives  and  child  and  followed  by  a 
large  retinue  entered  the  tapovana  for  recreation.  The 
King  and  his  wives  entered  the  lake  and  Sukanya  with 
her  friends  moved  about  in  the  garden  plucking  flowers 
and  playing.  Moving  about  thus  aimlessly  Sukanya  and 
party  reached  the  place  where  Cyavana  was  doing 
penance.  She  saw  the  huge  shrubby  growth  and  while 
looking  at  it  saw  two  gleaming  points  inside  the  shrubby 
heap.  She  was  about  to  break  open  the  thing  when  from 
inside  she  heard  somebody  addressing  her  thus  :  "Oh, 
innocent  girl,  why  do  you  think  of  doing  this  mischief. 
Please  do  go  your  way.  I  am  an  ascetic.  What  wrong 
have  I  done  to  you  for  you  to  disturb  me  like  this  ?"  But 
Sukanya  brought  up  as  she  was,  as  a  very  pet  girl  did 
not  like  anybody  advising  her  like  this  and  so  taking  a 
pointed  stick  gave  two  pricks  at  the  site  of  the  gleam- 
points  and  left  the  place  arrogantly. 
The  gleam-points  were  the  eyes  of  Cyavana  and  so  he 
lost  his  eyes  and  suffered  much  from  the  pain.  Though 
he  felt  angry  he  did  not  curse  anybody.  But  slowly  the 




country  began  to  witness  the  evil  effects  of  this  cruel 
deed.  People  stopped  passing  urine  or  faeces.  Even 
animals  were  affected.  The  King  and  his  ministers  were 
worried.  People  came  on  deputation  to  the  King  to 
describe  the  disaster  that  had  gripped  the  state.  The 
King  began  to  doubt  that  somebody  must  have  done  some 
great  injury  to  the  sage,  Cyavana.  He  started  enquiries 
asking  his  subjects  one  by  one  about  this.  But  everybody 
replied  in  the  negative.  He  bribed,  he  threatened.  The 
result  was  the  same.  Then  one  day  while  the  King  and 
his  courtiers  were  sitting  despondent  Sukanya  approach- 
ed her  father  and  confessed  what  she  had  done.  She 
said  :  "While  I  was  playing  with  my  friends  in  the 
tapovana  I  saw  this  huge  shrub-heap  and  two  points 
gleaming  from  inside.  I  took  a  pin-stick  and  pricked 
them  both  and  on  drawing  it  out  I  found  it  wet  also. 
But  I  left  the  matter  there  and  never  made  any 
enquiries  thereafter".  Saryati  now  knew  the  cause  of  this 
national  disaster  and  so  immediately  rushed  to  the  sage 
for  forgiveness.  Prostrating  before  the  rsi  the  King  pleaded 
"Oh,  best  of  rsis,  forgive  us  for  this  injury  done  unknow- 
ingly. My  daughter  who  is  only  an  innocent  child  did 
this  playfully  while  she  was  playing  in  this  garden  with 
her  friends.  She  never  knew  what  she  pricked  for  a  fun 
were  your  eyes.  Oh,  the  best  of  sage,  thou  art  rich  in 
forgiveness  and  so  please  do  condone  this  mischief  and 
bless  us."  Cyavana  replied  that  he  would  forgive  if  he 
gave  Sukanya  in  marriage  to  him.  Saryati  was  depressed. 
How  could  he  give  his  only  and  beautiful  daughter  to 
this  aged  senile  ugly  and  blind  rsi  ?  While  the  King  was 
thus  pondering  over  this,  Sukanya  herself  came  to  him 
and  said,  "Oh,  dear  father,  please  do  not  worry  on 
my  account.  I  shall  go  as  his  wife.  If  he  is  satisfied 
the  nation  would  be  saved  from  a  calamity  and  I  am 
prepared  to  sacrifice  my  happiness  for  the  sake  of  the 
country.  I  will  be  only  too  glad  to  do  so."  With  suppress- 
ed unwillingness  the  King  gave  his  daughter  in  marri- 
age to  Cyavana. 

Sukanya  after  her  marriage  engaged  herself  fully  in  the 
service  of  looking  after  the  welfare  of  her  husband.  She 
gave  her  husband  healthy  and  tasty  fruits  and  vegeta- 
bles, bathed  him  daily  in  hot  water,  placed  before  him 
all  the  materials  for  his  puja  and  when  the  time  came 
for  his  meals  gave  him  his  food  sitting  by  his  side.  After 
the  meals  she  gave  him  tambula  and  only  after  putting 
him  on  a  bed  would  she  go  to  attend  to  her  own  affairs. 
Alter  finishing  her  meals  she  would  come  again  to  her 
husband  and  sit  by  his  side  massaging  him.  In  the  even- 
ing she  would  make  ready  all  the  things  required  for  the 
puja.  and  after  the  puja  feed  him  with  nourishing  food. 
Whatever  remained  after  his  feed  would  be  taken  by  her. 
At  night  she  would  be  at  the  foot  of  her  husband  and 
take  a  nap.  In  the  morning  she  would  attend  to  all  the 
details  of  the  ablutions  of  her  husband.  Thus  Sukanya 
lived  true  to  her  husband  always  anxious  to  please  him. 
Then  one  day  the  Asvinlkumaras  saw  her  going  to  the 
asrama  after  her  bath.  They  were  very  much  attracted 
by  the  stunning  beauty  of  the  maiden  that  they  approach- 
ed her  and  asked  :  "Oh,  beautiful  maiden,  who  are  you? 
We  are  Asvinlkumaras.  You  seem  to  be  alone.  How  did 
you  happen  to  come  to  this  place  ?  You  are  one  who 
should  always  move  about  with  friends  and  courtiers 
and  what  is  the  reason  for  your  living  like  this  ?" 
Sukanya  replied,  "Revered  Devas,  I  am  the  daughter  of 
Saryati  and  wife  of  Cyavana.  Forced  by  certain  circum- 

stances my  father  gave  me  in  marriage  to  this  sage  who 
is  very  old  and  blind.  He  is  living  in  the  aSrama  nearby. 
I  am  living  with  him  looking  after  his  comfort.  If  you 
think  it  convenient  you  can  come  and  accept  our 
hospitality."  Hearing  this  the  Asvinlkumaras  told  her 
thus  :  "Sweet  girl,  you  are  fit  to  be  the  wife  of  one  who 
is  better  than  this  blind  old  ascetic.  So  please  do  accept 
one  of  us  as  your  husband".  Sukanya  did  not  relish 
this  talk  and  threatening  them  that  if  they  did  not  with- 
draw stopping  such  blabbering  she  would  curse  them 
to  ashes.  The  Asvimdevas  were  a  bit  surprised  and  also 
frightened  at  the  attitude  of  Sukanya.  "Oh,  Princess, 
we  are  immensely  pleased  at  your  sense  of  righteousness 
and  chastity  and  you  can  ask  of  us  a  boon.  We  are 
physicians  of  the  devas  and  can  give  your  husband  his 
sight  and  can  also  make  him  young  and  virile.  But  there 
is  a  condition  for  this.  As  soon  as  your  husband  be- 
comes young  and  handsome  we  will  also  become  like 
him  and  then  you  can  select  one  among  us.  Are  you 
willing?  If  so  we  will  make  your  husband  charming  and 
handsome  at  this  instant. 

Sukanya  was  well  pleased  with  this  offer  but  the  condi- 
tion placed  did  not  satisfy  her.  So  she  ran  to  the  asrama 
and  told  her  husband  thus  :  "Lord,  I  met  the  ASvim- 
devas  on  my  way  from  the  river  after  my  bath  and 
enamoured  of  my  beauty  they  have  made  this  offer.  We 
will  make  your  husband  young  and  beautiful  giving  him 
back  his  eyesight  and  then  we  will  change  ourselves  to 
resemble  him.  You  have  then  to  select  one  of  us  as  your 
husband.  I  am  not  able  to  understand  their  cunning  and 
so  I  have  come  to  you  to  get  from  you  the  answer  for 
their  question.  I  am  anxious  to  see  you  young  and  hand- 
some with  your  eyesight  regained.  I  shall  do  as  you 

Cyavana  said  :  "There  is  nothing  in  this  for  great  think- 
ing. You  go  and  tell  them  that  you  would  do  as  they 
wish  and  bring  them  down  here.  On  hearing  this  Sukanya 
went  to  the  Asvinlkumaras  and  took  them  to  the  asrama. 
They  asked  Cyavana  to  take  a  dip  in  the  lake  nearby 
and  as  he  entered  the  lake  the  Asvimdevas  also  entered 
it  and  took  a  dip  in  its  waters  along  with  Cyavana.  Lo  ! 
As  they  rose  from  the  waters  all  the  three  became  young 
and  handsome  looking  alike.  The  AsVinldevas  then 
requested  Sukanya  to  select  one  among  them.  Sukanya 
was  in  a  fix  and  she  prayed  to  her  goddess  to  give  her 
power  to  identify  her  husband.  She  was  blessed  with 
that  power  and  she  selected  Cyavana  from  the  lot  at 
which  the  Asvimdevas  were  also  pleased.  (Seventh 
Skandha,  Devi  Bhagavata). 

4)  Cyavana's  gratitude.  Cyavana  who  got  back  his  eye- 
sight and  youth  asked  the  Asvinlkumaras  what  boon 
they  wanted.  They  then  told  him  thus  :  "We  are  the 
physicians  of  the  devas.  Devendra  has  unnecessarily  put 
a  ban  on  our  drinking  Soma  (juice  extracted  from  the 
creeper  Soma) .  When  Brahma  performed  a  yaga  at 
Mahameru  this  leader  of  the  devas  did  not  allow  us  to 
take  a  soma  drink.  If  you  are  capable  of  doing  it  you 
should  get  us  the  right  to  take  this  celestial  drink." 
Cyavana  promised  to  do  that. 

Before  long,  King  Saryati  and  his  wife  came  to  the 
asrama  to  enquire  about  the  welfare  of  their  daughter. 
To  their  great  amazement  they  found  a  young  and  hand- 
some ascetic  at  the  asrama  and  were  a  bit  suspicious  of 
the  character  of  their  daughter.  But  soon  all  doubts  were 
cleared  and  they  were  immensely  pleased.  Cyavana  then 


told  the  King  the  request  of  the  ASvinldevas  and  Saryati 
also  promised  his  help  on  this  matter. 
On  their  return  to  their  palace  Saryati  decided  to  per- 
form a  big  yaga  to  which  all  the  devas  were  also  invited. 
Cyavana  officiated  as  priest.  The  AS vimdevas  were  also 
present  quite  to  the  dislike  of  Indra.  The  time  came  for 
distributing  soma,  and  when  Cyavana  called  the  Asvinl- 
kumaras  to  take  their  share  Indra  objected  saying  that 
since  they  were  physicians  of  the  devas  they  could  not 
be  given  that  drink.  Cyavana  argued  against  that  and 
after  a  great  verbal  combat  Cyavana  succeeded  in 
making  the  Asvinlkumaras  take  the  drink.  For  more 
details  look  under  'Cyavana'.  (Seventh  Skandha,  Devi 
Bhagavata) . 
5)  Other  information  regarding  ASvinikumaras. 

(1)  How  they  tested  Upamanyu.    This    story   is    given 
under  the  word  Apodadhaumya. 

(2)  Birth  of  Nakulaand  Sahadeva.  KuntI,  wife  ofPandu, 
had    obtained    from    Sage  Durvasas  five  sacred  mantras, 
the  chanting  of  each  of  which  would    give   her   a    child. 
Even  before  her  marriage  Kunti  tested  the  power  of  the 
mantras   by   chanting  one  of  them.  Surya  appeared  and 
she  had  to  take  a  son  from  him  who  became  the  famous 
Karna  later.  By  chanting  the  second,    third    and    fourth 
meditating    on    Yama,    Vayu    and    Indra,    KuntI   got 
respectively  the  sons  Dharmaputra,  Bhlma    and  Arjuna. 
The  fifth    mantra    she  gave  to  Madri  and  she  meditated 
on  the  AsVinldevas  and  got  Nakula  and  Sahadeva. 

(3)  The  As vinidevas  were  present  for   the   marriage   of 
Pancali.     (Sloka   6,    Chapter    186,    Adi    Parva,    M.B.). 
During  the  burning  of  the  forest  Khandava    the  AS  vini- 
devas  stood  on  the  side  of  Arjuna. 

(4)  King  Yuvanasva  became  pregnant  and  bore  a  child. 
It  was  the  AS.inldevas  who  took  the  child  out  by  surgery. 
The    boy   became    known  as  Mandhata  later.    (Sloka  3, 
Chapter  62,  Drona  Parva,  M.B.). 

(5)  During  the    Mahabharata   battle    the   AsVinidevas 
handed  over  some  Parsadas  to  the  god,    Skanda.    (Sloka 
38,  Chapter  43,  Salya  'Parva,  M.B.). 

(6)  The  Asvinldevas  like  very  much  oblations   of  Ghee. 
The  others  who  like  it  are  Brhaspati,  Pusan,  Bhaga  and 
Pavaka.  (Sloka  7,  Chapter  65,  AnuSasana  Parva,  M.B.). 

(7)  The   month  of    AsVina  (October-November)  is  the 
month  of  ASvimkumaras  and  if  a  man  gives  ghee  to    the 
Brahmins   freely   in    that   month    he  will  acquire   more 
physical    beauty.     (Sloka    10,    Chapter   65,   Anusasana 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

(8)  One    who   offers    Ghee   as   oblation  to  the  fire  for 
twelve   months   in   succession  will  reach  the  country   of 
the  Asvimkumaras.  (Sloka  95,  Chapter  107,    AnuSasana 
Parva,  M.B.). 

(9)  The    great   poet   of  Kerala,  Vallathol,  in  his  com- 
mentary on  the  93rd  Sukta    of  the    Rgveda    states    that 
there  is  a  belief  that  the  AsVins    and  Candrasuryas    (the 
Sun  and  Moon)  are  one  and  the  same. 

(10)  Dirghasravas    son   of  Dlrghatamas  once  prayed  to 
the  AsVimdevas  to  get  rains  and  it  is  said  that  they   gave 
a  downpour  of  sweet  water.  (Rgveda,  Sukta  112,  Rk  11). 

(11)  Once    a  sage    named   Gotama  was  lost  in  a  desert 
and  craved  bitterly  for  drinking  water.  He  prayed  to  the 
ASvinidevas  for  water  and    they  dug  a  well   itself  in  the 
desert  and  quenched  the  thirst  of  the  sage.   (Rk  9,  Sukta 
16,  Rgveda). 

(12)  The  sage  Dadhyanc taught    the  Asvinldevas  the 
technique,  Madhuvidya.    There  is  an  interesting  story 


about  it.  It  was  Indra  who  taught  this  to  Dadhyanc 
and  while  teaching  him  he  had  threatened  that  if  he 
gave  away  that  secret  to  anybody  else  his  head  would 
be  cut  off.  ASvinidevas  found  a  way  to  tide  over  this 
difficulty.  They  at  first  cut  off  his  head  and  fixed  the 
head  of  a  horse  on  him.  It  was  with  the  head  of  a 
horse  that  Dadhyanc  taught  them  Madhuvidya  and 
as  soon  as  the  teaching  was  over  his  horse-head  was 
cut  off  and  the  real  head  placed  in  its  place.  (Rk  22, 
Sukta  116,  Rgveda). 

(13)  The    vehicle    of  the    ASvinldevrs   is    a  donkey. 
Once    this   donkey    in  the  disguise  of  a  wolf  went  and 
stayed  with  RjraSva,  son  of  the  Rajarsi    Vrsagir.   Rjra- 
sVa  gave    the   wolf   to  eat  hundred  goats  belonging  10 
the  people  of  the  place.    Vrsagir  got  angry  at    this    act 
of  his  son  and  cursed  him.  The  son    became  blind  and 
he  got    back  his  eyesight  by  pleasing  the   AsVinldevas 
by    prayer    and    offerings.    (Rk    16,    Sukta   115,  Rg- 
veda) . 

(14)  Once    Surya    decided    to    give   his    daughter  in 
marriage  to  the  owner  of  the  horse  which  would  win  a 
horse-race  which  Surya  would  conduct.  In  the  race  the 
horse  of  the  Asvinrdevas  won    and   they    thus  married 
Surya's  daughter.  (Rk  17,  Sukta  117,  Rgveda). 

(15)  The  AsVinikumaras   killed   an    asura    of  name 
Visvak   and   destroyed  his  dynasty  also.   (Rk  16,  Sukta 
117,  Rgveda). 

ASVINlKUMARATlRTHA.  It  is  believed  that  the 
physical  beauty  of  man  would  be  increased  if  he  bath- 
es in  this  lake-  (Sloka  17,  Chapter  83,  Vana  Parva, 
M.B.) . 

ASVINlSUTA.  A  son  born  to  Surya  of  the  wife  of 
Sutapas.  There  is  this  story  about  it  in  Brahmavai- 
varta  Purana.  Once  when  the  wife  of  Sutapas  was  on 
a  pilgrimage  Surya  happened  to  see  her.  The  beautiful 
and  venerable  lady  refused  to  accede  to  the  desire  of 
Surya  and  so  the  latter  used  force  and  took  her.  They 
had  a  son  who  was  named  AsVinlsuta.  On  her  return 
after  the  pilgrimage  with  her  son  she  explained  all  that 
happened  and  the  sage  sent  both  of  them  out.  Surya 
taught  his  son  AsVinisuta  astrology  and  made  him  a 
master  in  that  science.  Knowing  that,  Sutapas  cursed 
him  and  said  he  would  turn  to  be  one  very  diseased. 
Later  the  sage  amended  his  curse  and  added  that  he 
would  be  free  from  disease  if  he  worshipped  the  sun. 

ASVINlTlRTHA.  Promises  bodily  splendour  if  one 
takes  a  bath  in  this  lake.  (Sloka  21,  Chapter  25, 
AnuSasana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ATALA.  This  is  one  of  the  seven  sections  of  Patala.  The 
seven  sections  are  :  Atala,  Vitala,  Sutala,  Talatala, 
Mahatala,  Rasatala,  Patala.  Of  them  Atala  has  been 
described  as  follows  :  Atala  is  the  first  world  of  Patala. 
There  reigns  Bala,  the  son  of  Maya  who  is  the  famous 
but  haughty  magician.  He  has  cieated  96  Mayas  who 
are  capable  of  granting  all  kinds  of  desires.  Even  now 
certain  persons  who  are  interested  in  the  practice  of 
Black  magic,  learn  some  of  these  96  arts  and  practise 
them.  When  this  mighty  fellow  opens  his  mouth  for 
yawning,  three  groups  of  women  known  as  PumScalls, 
Svairinis  and  KaminTs  emerge  from  his  mouth.  He  has 
with  him  a  rasayana  called  hataka  with  which  he  can 
eaisly  entice  and  seduce  all  who  enter  Atala  and  to 
strengthen  them  for  satisfying  his  lust.  After  enticing 
them  with  it,  he  enjoys  uncontrolled  pleasure  with 
them,  showering  on  them  his  amorous  glances,  bewitch- 



ing    smiles   and    embraces.    (Devi    Bhagavata,  Asjama 
Skandha) . 

ATAVlSlKHARA.     Name  of  a  village  in  ancient  India. 
(M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  48). 

ATHARVA(M).  Among  the  Vedas,  this  has  the  fourth 
place.  It  comprises  different  kinds  of  incantations  of 
occult  powers  for  the  destruction  of  enemies.  Atharvan 
the  son  of  Vasistha  was  the  author  of  this  Veda.  In 
Chapter  6  of  the  third  section  of  Visnu  Purana  the 
following  reference  is  made  to  Atharvaveda:  "Sumantu 
Maharsi  who  was  of  infinite  glory,  first  taught  this 
Atharvaveda  to  his  disciple  Kabandha.  (Sumantu 
Maharsi  was  the  son  of  Jaimini,  who  was  the  disciple 
of  Vedavyasa ) .  Kabandha  divided  Atharvaveda  into 
two  parts  and  communicated  them  to  two  Maharsis 
named  DevadarSa  and  Pathya.  DevadarsVs  disciples 
were:  Medha,  Brahmabali,  Sautkayani  and  Pippalada. 
Pathya  had  three  disciples  named  Jabali,  Kumudadi 
and  Saunaka.  They  also  made  Atharvaveda  compila- 
tions. Saunaka  divided  his  compilation  into  two  and 
gave  one  part  to  Babhru  and  the  other  to  Saindhava. 
Munjikesa  learnt  it  from  Saindhava  and  divided  the 
compilation  first  into  two  and  later  into  three  parts. 
The  five  divisions  of  the  Atharvaveda — Naksatrakalpa, 
Vedakalpa,  Samhitakalpa,  Angirasakalpa  and  Santi- 
kalpa,  were  made  by  Mufijikes'a.  Naksatrakalpa  con- 
tains Brahma's  works  :  Samhitakalpa  contains  Mantra 
Vidhi  ;  Angirasakalpa  contains  abhicara  and  Santikalpa 
contains  taming  of  horses,  elephants  etc. 
The  mantras  (incantations)  in  Atharvaveda  and  their 
uses  are  given  below  : — 

Mantras  Uses 

1.  Suparnastava          Getting  rid  of  serpents  and  snake- 

poison  (Sarpa-badha-nivaranam )  • 

2.  Indrenadatta          Fulfilment  of  all  desires   (Sarva- 

kama-siddhi) . 

3.  Ima  Devi  Attainment    of    peace    (Sarva- 

Santi-karma) . 

4.  Devamaruta  Attainment    of    peace     (Sarva- 

santi-karma) . 

5.  Yamasyalokat         Prevention  of  bad  dreams  (Duh 

svapna-Samana ) . 

6.  IndraScandraSca     Prosperity     in     commerce     and 
pancavanija  business   (Vanijya-labha) . 

7.  Kamojevaji  Enjoyment     of      women     (Stri- 

saubhagyam) . 

8.  Tubhyamevaja-      Equal     to     thousand     sacrifices 
vima  (Ayuta-homa-tulyam). 

9.  Agnegobhinna        Strengthening    of    the    intellect 


10.  Dhruvarhdhru-       Attainment    of  posts    of  honour 
vena  (Sthana-labha) 

1 1 .  Alaktajiva-  Profit    from    agriculture    (Krsi- 


12.  Ahan  te  bhagna     Prosperity   in  general. 

13.  Ye  me  paSa  Freedom      from     imprisonment 

(bandhana-vimukti) . 

14.  Sapatvaha  Destruction    of  enemies    (Satru- 

naSam) . 

15.  Tvamuttama  Enhancement     of    fame     (ya§o- 


16.  Yathamrgavati       Enjoyment  of  women    (Strl  sau- 


17.  YenapehadiSa         Birth  of  children  (Grabha-labha ). 

18.  Ayante  yonih          Getting  sons  ( Putra-labha ) . 


19.  SivaSivabhih 

20.  Brhaspatirnah 
pari  patu 

21.  Muncavitva 



Prosperity  in  general  (Saubhagya- 

vrddhi ) . 

Blessings   (Marga-maiigala ) . 

Warding    off     death       (Mrtyu- 

When  these  mantras  are  chanted  several  oblations  are 
made  to  the  sacrificial  fire.  Substances  like  Camata,  ghee, 
rice,  milk  are  thrown  into  the  fire  as  offerings.  (Agni 
Purana,  Chapter  262). 

ATHARVA  I.  This  muni  is  referred  to  in  Mahabharata, 
Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  43.  Verse  50,  as  a  professional 
chanter  of  Chandaveda.  Once  under  the  curse  of  Bhrgu 
Maharsi,  Agni  hid  himself  under  the  sea.  (See  "AGNI'). 
At  that  time,  it  was  Atharva  who,  at  the  suggestion  of 
the  Devas,  went  under  the  water  and  discovered  Agni. 
(M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  222,  Verse  8). 
Atharva  recovered  Agni,  and  re-created  the  worlds 
which  were  lying  dormant  owing  to  the  absence  of  fire. 
(M.B.,Vana  Parva,  Chapter  222,  Verse  19). 
Atharva  was  born  from  Brahma's  face.  His  wife  was 
Santi,  the  daughter  of  Kardama.  Citti  was  another 
name  for  Santi.  But  there  are  some  Puranas  which  re- 
fer to  Citti  as  another  wife  of  Atharva.  Also;  there  are 
Puranas  which  say  that  Atharva  was  Aiigiras  himself. 

ATHARVA  II.  This  name  has  been  used  as  a  synonym 
of  Siva.  (M.B.,  AnuSasana  Parva,  Chapter  17,  Verse 

ATHARVA  III.  In  Rgveda  another  Atharva  maybe 
seen.  It  is  said  that  he  was  the  author  of  the  Atharva- 
veda. After  learning  Brahmavidya  from  Brahma,  it 
was  this  Atharva.  who  first  brought  fire  to  the  earth 
from  heaven.  Atharva  had  two  wives  named  Santi  and 
Citti.  This  Atharva  was  the  same  person  as  Atharvana, 
the  son  of  Vasistha.  (Bhagavata,  4th  Skandha,  Chap- 
ter 1). 


ATHARVANA.  A  son  of  Vasistha.  (Bhagavata,  Fourth 
Skandha,  Verse  42). 

ATHIDA  (M) .  Name  of  a  Janasthana  (Town)  in  ancient 
India.  (M.B.,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  64). 

ATIBAHU.  He  was  a  Gandharva  born  to  KaSyapa  by 
his  wife  Pradha.  He  had  three  brothers  :  Haha,  Huhu 
and  Tumburu.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65,  Verse 

ATIBALA.  A  mantra.  Visvamitra  who  took  the  boys 
Rama  and  Laksmana  to  the  forest  taught  them  two 
mantras,  Bala  and  Atibala,  to  liberate  them  from 
hunger  and  thirst.  Valmiki  Ramayana,  Balakanda, 
Sarga  22) 

ATIBALA  I.  The  Maharsi  Atibala  was  the  cause  of  the 
death  of  Sri  Rama  and  Laksmana. 

After  the  war  with  Ravana,  Sri  Rama  returned  to  Ayo- 
dhya  with  his  retinue  and  began  his  reign.  After  re- 
nouncing Sita  while  Sri  Rama  was  living  in  the  palace 
with  Laksmana,  Satrughna  and  their  families,  one  day 
Brahma  summoned  Yama  and  said  :  "Sri  Rama  is  the 
incarnation  of  Mahavisnu.  He  has  fulfilled  all  the  pur- 
poses of  the  incarnation.  Now  Visnu  has  to  be  recalled 
to  Vaikuntha". 

On  hearing  this,  Yama  assuming  the  guise  of  a  Sanny- 
asi  named  Atibala  appeared  before  Sri  Rama.  He  said 
he  had  to  tell  a  secret  to  Sri  Rama.  Accordingly  Sri 
Rama  sent  everyone  else  out  of  the  audience  chamber. 




Laksmana  was  asked  to  guard  the  entrance.  It  was 
announced  that  if  anyone  entered  the  hall,  Laksmana 
would  be  killed. 

At  this  stage,  Maharsi  Durvasas  arrived  at  the  entrance 
accompanied  by  many  of  his  disciples.  He  had  come 
after  having  performed  penance  for  a  thousand  years 
and  in  great  hunger  and  thirst.  He  wanted  to  see  the 
King  to  ask  for  sumptuous  food.  Laksmana  requested 
him  to  wait  a  little  but  Durvasas  refused  to  do  so.  He 
even  threatened  that  he  would  reduce  all  of  them  to 
ashes  by  his  curse.  Finding  no  alternative,  Laksmana 
entered  the  hall  and  informed  Sri  Rama  of  the  situation. 
Durvasas  was  given  a  sumptuous  meal.  But  for  the  ful- 
filment of  the  condition  Liksmana's  death  became  neces- 
sary. Sri  Rama  cried  with  a  broken  heart.  The  honest 
Laksmana  went  alone  to  the  Sarayu  river  and  drowned 
himself  in  its  depths.  Soon  after,  Sri  Rama  entrusting 
the  affairs  of  the  state  to  others  and  in  the  presence  of 
thousands  of  spectators  plunged  into  the  Sarayu  river 
and  renouncing  his  earthly  life,  returned  to  Vaikunfha. 
(Uttara  Ramayana). 

ATIBALA  II.  The  name  of  a  follower  given  to  Skanda 
by  god  Vayu  on  the  battle-field.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva, 
Chapter  45,  Verse  4.4). 

ATIBALA  III.  There  was  another  King  named  Atibala 
who  was  a  great  scholar  in  Nltiiastra.  From  the  tine 
of  his  accession  to  the  throne,  he  began  to  lead  a 
vicious  life.  This  Atibala's  father  was  a  King  named 
Anariga.  (M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  59,  Verse  92) . 

ATIBHIMA.  One  of  the  sons  of  the  Agni,  Tapa.  (M.B., 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  220,  Verse  11). 

ATIKAYA.     One  of  the  sons  of  Ravana. 

1)  Previous  Birth.     This  is  a  story  concerning  the  initial 
stage  of  the  creation  of  the  Universe.  After   completing 
the  task  of  creation  Brahma,  in  his  pride  fell  into  a  sleep. 
In  order  to  slight  Brahma  a  little,  Mahavisnu  produced 
two  Raksasas  called  Madhu  andKaitabha  from  his  ears. 
Hearing  their  terrible  roar  Brahma  woke  up  in  fear  and 
fled  to  Mahavisnu  seeking  refuge.  Visnu  called  Madhu 
and    Kaitabha    and      asked    them    what    boon    they 
would  like  to  ask.  They  proudly  replied  that  they  would 
grant  a  boon  to  Visnu.  In  that  case  Mahavisnu  wanted 
them    to  grant  him  leave  to  kill  them.  They  answered  : 
"We  will  not  break   our   promise    about   granting   the 
boon.    But   since  our   passion  for  fighting  has  not  been 
abated,    you   must   fulfil  our  eager  desire."  Mahavisnu 
said  :    "I  agree.    But  let  my  boon  be  carried    out    first. 
After  that  I  shall  see  that  your  wish  is   properly   fulfill- 
ed.  After  your  death,  one  of  you  will  be  reborn   under 
the    name   of  Khara  and  the  other    under  the  name  of 
Atikaya.  In  the  Tretayuga  I  shall  kill    Khara  in    single 
combat  after  allaying  his  passion  for  fighting.  Laksmana 
who     is    the    incarnation    of  Ananta    will    fight    with 
Atikaya  to  his  full  satisfaction  and  kill  him.  Thus  both 
of  you  will  get  Virakti  and  Mukti." 

After  saying  this,  Mahavisnu  made  the  two  asuras 
stand  ^on  each  of  his  thighs  and  killed  them  with  his 
Sudarsana  Cakra.  They  were  born  again  as  Khara  and 
Atikaya.  (Kamba  Ramayana,  Yuddha  Kanda). 

2)  Birth.     There  is  a  story  about  the  birth    of  Atikaya 
in    the   Yuddha  Kanda  of    Kamba  Ramayana  :  After 
his  victory   over    Kubera  Ravana   was  returning  in  his 
Puspaka  Vimana.  On  his  way  he    saw    some  beautiful 
Gandharva  women  playing  in  the  valley  of  Mayuragiri. 
Their   leader    was    Citratigl,  the  wife    of  Citraiigada. 

Ravana  seduced  her  and  had  a  secret  union  with  her.  At 
once  she  became  pregnant  and  gave  birth  to  a  dazzlingly 
bright  baby.  The  mother  handed  over  the  child  to 
Ravana  and  returned  to  the  world  of  the  Gandharvas. 
Ravana,  in  his  paternal  love,  took  the  child  into  the 
Vimana  and  proceeded.  On  the  way,  the  Vimana 
knocked  against  a  mountain  peak  and  the  baby  was 
thrown  overboard  and  fell  in  the  forest.  Ravana  stop- 
ped the  Vimana  and  made  a  search  for  the  baby  in  the 
forest.  He  found  the  child  without  the  slightest  injury, 
smiling  and  lying  on  a  flat  rock  in  the  deep  woods.  He 
failed  in  his  attempt  to  take  it  up  even  though  he  used 
ten  of  his  hands.  The  child  began  to  grow  steadily  in 
size.  Then  he  tried  again  to  lift  the  baby  up  using  all 
his  twenty  arms.  The  boy,  who  had  by  this  time  grown 
into  enormous  size,  suddenly  sprang  up  and  getting  in- 
to the  Vimana  took  his  seat  in  it.  Ravana  gave  him  the 
name  Atikaya.  On  his  arrival  in  Lanka,  he  presented 
him  as  adopted  son  to  the  barren  Dhanyamala.. 
Atikaya  was  brought  up  by  Dhanyamala. 

3)  The  Boons.     Atikaya  went  to  Gokarna    and  did  pe- 
nance to  please  Brahma.  Brahma  appeared,    but  being 
fully  absorbed  in  Samadhi,  Atikaya  was  not    aware  of 
his   presence.  Even   his  [life-breath  had  been  stopped. 
Brahma,  by  his  power,  instilled  life-breath  into  him  and 
restored  him  to  consciousness.    He  granted  Atikaya  all 
the  boons    he  asked    for.  They   were  three  in  number. 
The  first  was  the  gift  of  Brahmastra  which  could  smash 
anyone.  The  second  was  the  gift  of  an    armour   which 
was  unassailable  by  anyone.  The  third  was  absence  of 
thirst,  desire  and   other  cravings. 

4)  Education.     Atikaya  went  to    Kailasa  and    received 
his   education  from    Siva.    He  learnt  all  the  sciences, 
Arts,  Sruti,  Smrti  etc.  from  there.  On  the   completion 
of  his  course  he  asked  what    Gurudaksina    he    should 
pay.     Siva  made  him   promise    that   he    would    never 
practise    Black  magic.  Pleased  with  him,  Siva  awarded 
him  the  Pasupatastra. 

5)  Victory  in  Battle.     Atikaya  had  an  uncle,  a  Raksasa 
named  Candra.  Once  he  was  defeated  by  Indra.   It  was 
at    this   time   of    chagrin   that  he  came    to  know  that 
Atikaya    had    reached   Lanka  with   the   Pasupatastra. 
Candra  Raksasa  ordered   Atikaya  to  bring   Indra  as    a 
captive.  Atikaya  went  to    Svarga  (Heaven)  and  began 
a  war  with  Indra.    Mahavisnu  who  came  to  help  Indra 
used    his  SudarSana   cakra.      Atikaya    shot   his   PaSu- 
patastra.   Knowing  Atikaya's  history  well,   Mahavisnu 
brought  the  battle  to  a  close.  Both  parties  accepted  the 
position  that  Devendra  had  lost  the  battle  and   Atikaya 
had  won. 

6)  Death.     In    the   Ramayana  battle    Atikaya    fought 
on  the  side  of  Ravana.    After  a  most   terrible   conflict, 
Laksmana  killed  Atikaya.  (Kamba  Ramayana,  Yuddha 
Kanda) . 

ATILOMA.  An  Asura  who  was  killed  by  Sri  Krsna. 
(M.B.  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  38). 

ATIMANYU.     He  was  one  of  the  ten  sons  of  Manu. 

ATIRATHA.  There  was  a  King  named  Matinara  in 
PuruvarhSa.  (See  PORUVAM§A).  Four  sons  were  born 
to  him:Tamsu,  Mahan,  Atiratha  and  Druhyu.  (M.B., 
Adi  Parva,  Chapter  94,  Verse  14). 

ATIRATRA.  He  was  one  of  the  ten  children  born  to 
Manu  by  Nadvala.  (See  MANU  VANl-lA).  Kuru, 
Puru,  Satadyumna,  Tapasvl,  Satyavan,  Suci,  Agnistoma, 
Atiratra,  Sudyumna  and  Atimanyu  were  the  names  of 



the  ten  brilliant  sons  of  Nadvala.  (Visnu  Purana,  Part 
I,  Chapter  13). 

ATISAN.DA.     After  his  death  Balabhadra    Rama    went 
to  Patafa  in  the  guis^  of  Ananta.  All  the  serpents  wor- 
shipped him.  Among  them  was  a  serpent  named     Ati- 
sanda.  (M.B.,  Mausala  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  16). 
ATl£  '-.  NGA.  Vindhya  Presented  two  parsadas  to    Skanda 
on  the  battlefield.  They  were  AtiSrnga  and   Ucchrriga. 
(M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  45,  Verses  49,  50). 
ATISTHIRA.     Mah'meru  presented  two  Parsadas  nam- 
ed  Atisthira  and    Sthira    to  Skanda  on  the  battlefield. 
(M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  45,  yerse  48) . 
ATITHI  (guest).       In   ancient   Bharata     Atithi-satkara 
(hospitality  to  a  guest)  was  considered  as  a   yajfla.    In 
Manusmrti,  Chapter  100,  Verse  3,  it  is  said  that  even  if 
one    lives  on  the  scattered  grains  in  the  fields  after  har- 
vest,   and   even    if  penance  is    offered    in  the  midst  of 
Pancagni    (five  fires)    unless    the  Brahmin   who  comes 
as   a  guest   is  fed,    all  virtuous   deeds  would  be  useless. 
Besides,    Manu    has   made  the  following  remarks  about 
the  Atithi   (guest) . 

"A  new  visitor  at  night  must  be  treated  as  an  Atithi. 
An  Atithi  is  one  who  comes  occasionally,  not  daily. 
But  one  who  lives  in  your  village  and  goes  about  as  a 
vagabond  for  a  living,  does  not  deserve  to  be  treated  as 
an  Atithi.  The  guest  who  comes  either  before  or  after 
mealtime  should  not  be  sent  away  without  being  fed. 
Even  a  VaiSya  or  Sudra  who  comes  as  a  guest  to  a 
Brahmin's  house  has  to  be  given  food  when  the  servants 
are  given  food." 

ATITHIGVA.  He  was  a  King  referred  to  in  the  Rg- 
veda.  He  had  another  name,  "Divodasa".  This  King 
had  fought  several  battles  against  Asuras  with  the  help 
of  Indra.  It  is  said  that  once,  being  afraid  of  the  Asuras, 
he  tried  to  hide  himself  under  the  water.  (Rgveda, 
Mandala  1,  Anuvaka  10,  Sukta  53;  Rgveda,  Mandala 
1,  Anuvaka  16,  Sukta  112). 

ATIVARCAS.  Himavan  gave  Skanda  two  Parsadas  on  the 
battlefield.  They  were  Ativarcas  and  Suvarcas.  (M.B., 
Salya  Parva,  Chapter  45,  Verse  46). 

ATIYAMA.     God  Varuna  gave  Skanda  on  the  battlefield 
two  Parsadas    (attendant   soldiers).    One   of  them  was 
Yama   and  the  other  was  Atiyama.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva, 
Chapter  45,  Verse  45) . 

1)  The  son  of  Brahma.     Atri    Maharsi   was  one  of  the 
imnasaputras    of   Brahma.    The   manasaputras    were  : 
Marlci,    Angiras,   Atri,    Pulastya,    Pulaha,    and  Kratu 
(M.B.,'Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65,  Verse  10). 

2)  One  of  the  Saptarfis.  Brahma's  sons,    Marlci,  Angiras, 
Atri,    Pulastya,    Pulaha,  Kratu  and  Vasistha  are  known 
as  the   Saptarsis    (seven   sages).    (M.B.,  Santi    Parva, 
Chapter  208) . 

3 )  Creator  of  the  pracetases.     The  sage  Pracinabarhis   was 
born    in    the  family   of  Atri    Maharsi.    Ten  Pracetases 
(Prajapatis)  were  born  as  the  sons  of  this  Muni.  (M.B., 
Sakti  Parva,  Chapter  208). 

4)  Citra  Sikhandi.     Among   the   seven  Munis   known    as 
Citra   Sikhandis,   we   see   Atri    Maharsi    as  one  of  the 
Astapraki-tis  which  form  the  basis  of  the  Universe. 

5)  Important  events.      (1)  How  Mahavi$nu  became  Atri's  son. 
Kasyapa  had  a  son  named  Kasipu.  He  was  a  very  mighty 
ruler   and    carried   on  his  reign  in  an  ungodly  manner. 
In  a  terrible  battle  which  took  place  at  that  time  between 
the  Devas  and  Asuras  Kasipu  was  killed.    Prahlada   be- 

came the  Asura  King.  Then  there  was  a  battle  between 
Indra  and  Prahlada.  After  six  years' war,  Prahlada  with- 
drew, defeated.  Later  Mahabali,  the  son  of  Virocana 
(grandson  of  Piahlada)  became  emperor  of  Asuras.  War 
broke  out  again  between  Mahabali  and  Indra.  In  this 
war,  Mahavisnu  helped  Indra.  The  Asuras  were  utterly 
defeated.  They  sought  refuge  with  Sukra,  the  Asura  guru. 
Sukra  promised  to  help  them.  He  set  out  to  the  Hima- 
layas to  receive  a  powerful  mantra  from  Siva.  The 
Asuras  kept  waiting  for  Sukra's  return. 
At  this  stage,  Mahavisnu  who  was  the  protector  of  Indra, 
came  to  Sukra's  aSrama  and  killed  Sukra's  mother, 
Kavyamata.  Seeing  this  impudence  of  Mahavisnu,  Bhrgu 
Maharsi  was  enraged  and  cursed  him  that  he  should  be 
born  many  times  in  human  wombs.  It  is  on  account  of 
this  that  Mahavisnu  had  to  take  many  avataras  (incar- 
nations). It  was  in  this  way  that  Mahavisnu  incarnated 
as  Dattatreya,  the  son  of  Atri.  (Devi  Bhagavata,  4th 

(2)  Atri  and  ParaSara.     It  was  a  time  when  Vasistha  and 
VisVamitra  were  in  a  state  of  mutual  ill-will.  Once  King 
Kalmasapada  was  going  about  in  the  forest  on  a  hunting 
expedition.  He  met  Sakti,  the  eldest  son  of  Vasisfha  in 
the  forest.  The  King  did  not  respect  him  properly.  Sakti 
transformed    Kalmasapada  into  a  Raksasa  by  his  curse. 
The   Raksasa  who  was  also  a  cannibal,    first  swallowed 
Sakti    himself.    VisVamitra    offered  whatever   help    he 
could,    to   destroy  Vasistha's    family.  Kalmasapada  ate 
successively  all  the  100  sons  of  Vasistha.  Vasistha,  in  great 
sorrow    and    Sakti's  wife,  Adfsyanti  lived  in  an  aSrama. 
AdrsyantI   was   pregnant   at  the    time  of  Sakti's  death. 
In    due    course    she  gave  birth  to  a  boy  who  was  called 
ParaSara  and  who  later  on  became  the  father    of  Vyasa. 
when  Paras' ara  grew  up,  he  came  to  know  that  his  father 
Sakti   was    eaten   by    the   Raksasa.  Enraged  at  this,  he 
started  a  yajfla  to  annihilate  the  whole  race  of  Raksasas. 
As  the  yajfia  gained  intensity  and  force  Atri  Muni  arrived 
there  with  certain  other    Maharsis  and  dissuaded  Para- 
Sara  from  the  yajfla.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  181 ). 

(3)  Atri's   dispute   with    Vainya.     Atri    Maharsi  and  his 
wife   once  got  ready  to  go  for  Vanavasa.  At  that  time  the 
poor   Maharsi's   wife  was  in  great  distress  because  they 
had   no   money  to    be  distributed  to  their  disciples  and 
children.    She   requested   her   husband    to   go  to  King 
Vainya    and    to  beg  for  some   money.    Accordingly  the 
Maharsi  visited  King  Vainya  at  his  yaga§  (The  shed 
where  a  yaga  is  held) .  He  began  to  flatter  Vainya  by  say- 
ing that  he  was  the  first  among  kings  and  so  on.  Vainya 
did   not    like  it.  He  began  to  dispute  with  Atri.  Vainya 
remarked    that   Indra   was    the  first  King.  To  settle  the 
dispute    they  went   together    to     Sanatkumara     Muni. 
Sanatkumara    sent    them   away   reconciled.    After  that 
Vainya  gave  Atri  much  wealth.  After  distributing  all  this 
wealth  among  their  sons  and  disciples  Atri  and  his  wife 
set  out  to  the  forest  to  perform  penance. 

(4)  How   Atri   became   Sun   and  Moon.     Once    there  was 
a  fierce  battle  between  Devas  and  Asuras.  Owing  to  the 
shower   of  arrows   from  the  Asuras,  the  Sun  and  Moon 
became    dim.    Darkness    spread  everywhere.  The  Devas 
began  to  grope  in  the  dark.  They  requested  Atri  Maha- 
rsi   to    find    a  remedy  for  this.  Moved  by  their  distress, 
Atri   suddenly    transformed    himself  into  the  Sun  and 
Moon.    The  Moon    gave    light    to    the  Devas.  The  Sun 
burnt   up    the   Asuras   by   his   intense   heat.  Thus    the 
Devas  were   saved.  This  story  was  told  by  Vayu  Bhaga- 




vana,  to  Arjuna.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  156). 

(5)  'Atri  and  King  Vrsadarbhi.     In    the    Mahabharata  we 
find   a   story   about   a   difference    of    opinion  between 
King  Vrsadarbhi    and    some  Maharsis.  This  story  was 
told  by  Bhlsma  to  Yudhisthira  about  the   kind  of  per- 
sons from  whom  Brahmins  may  accept  gifts.    Once    the 
Munis,  Kasyapa,  Atri,  Vasistha,  Bharadvaja,  Gautama, 
Visvamitra,   Jamadagni,    and    Pasusakha,    with   Arun- 
dhati   and    Ganda,    who  were  the  wives  of  two  Munis, 
travelled   round    the   world.  Their  object    was  to  go  to 
Brahmaloka.    At  that    time    there   was  drought  in  the 
world.  King  Vrsadarbhi,  the  son  of  Sibi,  suggested  that 
the  above-mentioned  Munis  should  be  called  and  given 
wealth.  They  refused  to  accept  it.    Vrsadarbhi    became 
angry.  He  performed  Homa  in  Ahavanlyagni  and  from 
the  agnikurida,  the  Raksasi   Yatudham    (Krtya)  arose. 
Vrsadarbhi   sent   Yatudham    to  destroy    Atri    and  all 
other  Munis.  As  Yatudham  was  guarding  a  lotus  pond 
in  the  forest,  the  munis  led  by  Atri  happened    to   come 
that    way.      The    Maharsis   were  able     to      recognize 
Yatudham.  They  beat  her  with   their  tridandu  (Trident 
or    a   kind   of  magic  wand)  and  reduced  her  to  ashes. 
After  satisfying  their  hunger  by  eating  the  lotus    flowers 
the   Maharsis  went   to   Brahmaloka.   (M.B.,  Anusasana 
Parva,  Chapter  93). 

(6)  Atri  and  Srdddha.     There  is  a  passage  in  the  Maha- 
bharata in  which  Atri  gives  advice  to  the  emperor  Nimi 
who  belonged  to  Atri's  family.  The  story  of  how  Sraddha 
originated  in  the  world  which  Bhlsma  had  told  Dharma- 
putra   was   retold   by   Atri.    A   son  named  Dattatreya 
was    born   to   Atri,   the  son  of  Brahma.  Dattatreya  be- 
came  King.    Nimi   was  his    son.    Nimi's  son  died  after 
one  thousand  years.  Nimi  who  was  in  deep  grief  at  the 
death  of  his  son,  ordained  a  Sraddha  in  memory  of  his 
son.     On   that  occasion  Atri  Maharsi   came  there  and 
explained  to  Nimi  the  importance   of  Sraddha.    (M.B., 
Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  91,  Verses  20-44). 

(7)  How  Brahma,  Visnu   and  MaheSvara  (Siva)    were   born 
as  sons  of  Atri.     There  is  no  other  woman  in  the  Puranas 
who  surpasses  Silavati  in  her  fidelity  to  her  husband.  In 
order  to  enable  Ugrasravas,  her  husband,  to  satisfy  his 
passion,    she   once  carried  him  on  her  own  shoulders  to 
a  prostitute's   house.    On    the  way,    Mandavya    Muni 
pronounced    a    curse  that  UgraSravas  should  die  before 
sunrise.    The    grief-stricken      Silavati     pronounced     a 
counter-curse  that    the   sun   should  not  rise  on  the  next 
day.  As  the  sun  failed  to  rise,    the   Trimurtis    (Brahma, 
Visnu  and  Siva),  accompanied  by  Anasuya,  Atri's  wife, 
went    to  Silavati.  Anasuya  persuaded  Silavati  to   with- 
draw her  curse.    The  Trimurtis  who  were  happy  at  the 
success  of  their  mission  (of  bringing  about  the  Sunrise) 
asked   Anasuya  to  demand  any  boon  she   wanted.  Ana- 
suya  expressed  her  wish    that  the  Trimurtis    (Brahma, 
Visnu    and    Siva)  should   be  born  as  her  sons  and  they 

Mahavisnu,  under  the  name  of  Dattatreya,  was  born 
as  the  son  of  Anasuya.  Siva  was  born  to  her  under  the 
name  of  Durvasas.  There  is  a  story  about  it  in  the  Brah- 
manda Parana.  Once  Siva  got  angry  with  the  Devas. 
They  began  to  flee  for  life.  But  Brahma  alone  did  not 
run  away.  Siva  who  became  more  furious  at  this, 
pinched  off  one  of  the  heads  of  Brahma.  Still  he  was 
not  pacified.  Parvatl  who  was  alarmed,  approached  Siva 
and  ^  begged  him  to  suppress  his  anger.  At  her  request, 
Siva's  fury  was  transferred  and  deposited  in  Anasuya, 

Atri's  wife.  Durvasas  is  the  embodiment  of  that  element 
of  Siva's  fury. 

According  to  the  promise,  Brahma  also  took  his  birth 
as  the  moon  from  Anasuya,  the  wife  of  Atri.  (For  that 
story,  see  PURURAVAS).  There  is  a  story  about  that 
also  in  the  Brahmanda  Purana.  Once  when  Brahma 
was  performing  the  task  of  creation,  he  experienced 
carnal  passsion.  Sarasvati  was  the  offspring  of  that 
passion.  When  Brahma  saw  her,  he  fell  in  love  with  her 
also.  This  made  him  feel  angry  towards  Kamadeva.  He 
pronounced  a  curse  that  Kamadeva  should  be  burnt  up 
in  the  fire  from  Siva's  eye.  (This  is  why  Kamadeva  was 
later  burnt  to  death  by  Siva) .  Although  Kama  had 
retreated  from  Brahma  his  passion  had  not  been  sup- 
pressed. Brahma  transferred  his  passion  to  Atri  Maharsi. 
The  Maharsi  gave  it  to  Anasuya,  his  wife.  Since  she 
was  unable  to  bear  such  a  violent  passion,  she  gave  it 
back  to  her  husband.  That  passion  emerged  from  Atri's 
eye  in  the  form  of  the  Moon.  This  is  why  lovers  experi- 
ence strong  passion  for  each  other  at  the  time  of  the 
rising  of  the  moon.  (Brahmanda  Purana,  Chapters 
39-43) . 

(8)  Atri   and  Ganga  Devi.     Once,    while  Atri  Maharsi 
was    performing  penance   in  Kamada   forest,  there  was 
a  terrible  drought  in  the  country.  At  that  time,  his  wife 
Anasuya  made  a  Sivalinga  of  sand  and    offered  worship 
to   it.   Then  Atri  asked   her  to  give  him  a  little  water. 
There  was  no   water   anywhere.  Suddenly  Ganga  Devi 
appeared  there  and  said  to  Anasuya  :     "There  will  be 
a  hole  here.  Water  will  come  out  of  it  in  a  torrent." 
Pure  water  began  to    flow  from  the   place   pointed    out 
by  Ganga  Devi.     Anasuya  begged  Ganga  Devi  to   stay 
there  for  a  month.  Ganga  Devi   agreed  to  do  so  on  con- 
dition that  Anasuya   would  transfer   her   Tapi  £§  -kti  to 
her  for  one  month. 

Atri  was  pleased  by  drinking  the  water.  He  asked  Ana- 
suya where  she  got  such  nice  fresh  water.  She  explain- 
ed to  him  all  matters.  Atri  expressed  his  desire  to  see 
Ganga  Devi.  She  appeared  before  him  at  once.  Ana- 
suya prayed  to  her  that  Ganga  should  continue  to  exist 
in  the  world  always.  Ganga  Devi  answered  that  she 
would  do  so  if  Anasuya  was  prepared  to  give  her  the 
fruit  of  one  year's  Tapasiakti  and  of  devoted  service  to 
her  husband.  Anasuya  agreed  to  that  condition.  Sud- 
denly Siva  appeared  there  in  the  shape  of  a  Linga.  At 
the  request  of  Atri  and  Anasuya  Siva  took  his  seat 
there  permanently  assuming  the  name  of  "AtriSvara". 
(Siva  Purana). 

(9)  Other  Details.       1.    Besides   Dattatreya,     Durvasas 
and    Candra.     Atri  had   another    son,    Praclnabarhis. 
(M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  208,    Verse  6). 

2.  Many  Pavakas  had  been  born  in  Atri  VarhS.i.    (M.B., 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  222,  Verses  27-29). 

3.  When    the   Kaurava-Pandava    war  was   raging  with 
great  fury,  many  Maharsis  went  to   Drona  and   advised 
him  to  stop  the  battle.  Atri  Maharsi  was  one    of  them. 
(M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  190,  Verse  35). 

4.  On  another  occasion,  a  King  named  Soma  performed 
a   Rajasuya    (Royal   sacrifice) .    Atri  Maharsi    was   the 
chief  priest  at  this  yaga.  (M.B.,    Salya    Parva,    Chapter 
43,  Verse  47). 

5.  Atri  was  also  among  the  Maharsis   who  had   gone  to 
witness  ParaSurama's  tapas.  (Brahmanda  Purana,  Chap- 
ter 64) . 




6.  Rgveda,  5th  Mandala  was  composed  byAtri.  (Rgveda 
S  irhhita,  Preface) . 

7.  Once  the  Asuras  put  Atri  Maharsi    into    the    Sata- 
d\'ara    yantra    (a  machine   of   torture   with  a  hundred 
holes).    Rgveda,    1st   Mandala,    16th   Anuvaka,  Sukta 

8.  Once  the  Asuras  tried  to  burn  Atri  alive.    (Rgveda, 
1st  Mandala,  16th  Anuvaka,  Sukta  112). 

9.  The  Asuras  at    another  time   made   Atri   lie    down 
in  a  machine  with  a  large  number  of    holes   and    tried 
to  burn  him  alive  in  it.  At  that  time   he   prayed  to  the 
Asvins  and  they  liberated  him.  (Rgveda,  1st  Mandala, 
17th  Anuvaka,  Sukta   116). 

10.  Atri    was    among  the    Maharsis    who    visited    Sri 
Rama,    on   his  return    to  Ayodhya  after    the  war  with 
Ravana.   (Uttara  Ramayana). 

1 1 .  From  the    navel  lotus  of  Visnu  Brahma  was  born, 
Atri  from  Brahma,  Soma  from  Atri,  and  Pururavas  from 
Soma  were  born.    (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  12). 

12.  Atri  begot  by  Anasuya,  Soma,  Durvasas  and  Datta- 
treyayogl.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  20). 

ATRI  II.  In  the  Puranas  another  Atri,  the  son  of  Sukra- 

carya,  is    also    seen  (M.B.,    Adi    Parva,    Chapter  65, 

Verse  27). 
ATRI  III.     The    term  Atri   has  been  used  as  an  epithet 

of  Siva.   (M.B.,  AnuSasana    Parva,    Chapter  17,  Verse 

AU.    This  word  means  Mahesvara  (Siva).  (Agni  Purana, 

Chapter  348) . 
AUDAKA.  This  is  the  place  where  Narakasura   with  his 

ten  thousand  girls  was  once  imprisoned.  It  is  a  plateau 

on  the    top   of  Maniparvata.    Because    water  was    in 

plenty   there  the    place  was  called  'Audaka'.  An  asura 

named   Nuru  was   the    keeper  of  this  plateau.    (Sabha 

Parva,  M.B.). 
AUDDALAKA.     A   holy   place    of  ancient    India.  The 

place    got   this  name  because    the  sage  Uddalaka  lived 

there.  It  is  believed  that  if  one  bathes  in  this  holy  place 

one  will  be  absolved  of  all  his  sins. 
AUDUMBARA.     The   King   of  the   state  of  Udumbara. 

This    king    once  paid    respects  to  emperor  Yudhistfiira 

and    gave   him   several    presents    and  gifts.   (Sloka  12, 

Chapter  53,  Sabha  Parva,  M.B.) . 
AUKTHYA.     A   glorifying  prayer  in  Samaveda.    (Sloka 

36,  Chapter  134,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 
AURASlKA.     A   country   of  ancient    India.  Sri    Krsna 

conquered  this   land.    (Sloka    16,    Chapter    11,  Drona 

Parva,    M.B.). 
AURVA  I.      (Urva,  Uruja).     A   fierce   saint  of  the  line 

of  Bhrgu  Maharsi. 

1)  Genealogy.   Descending  in  order  from  Visnu,  Brahma, 
Bhrgu,  Cyavana,  Aurva. 

Cyavana  Maharsi  married  Arusi,  daughter  of  Manu. 
Aurva  was  her  child  who  was  the  grandfather  of  Jamad- 
agni  and  the  great  grandfather  of  Paras' urama. 

2)  Birth.  The  Preceptors  of  the  Bhrgu  dynasty  were  the 
hereditary  gurus  of  the  Kings  of  Hehaya.    Krtavirya  a 
famous  King  of  the  Hehaya  dynasty  and  father  of  Kar- 
taviryarjuna  had  his  education  from  a  Bhrgu    rsi  living 
in    his    a$"ama.  On    competing  his  education    the  king 
paid   lavishly  and  the  Bhrgus   became   rich   thereafter. 
Krtavirya  died  and  his  sons  did  not  very  much  like  the 
Bharg  ivas    (Bhrgus)    becoming  rich  by  the   wealth   of 
their  ancestors.    Knowing  this  the  Bhrgjs  started  bury- 
ing their   wealth    under  the   earth.    Once    a  Ksatriya 

king  forcibly  dug  out  from  the  house  of  a  Bhrgu  the 
wealth  he  had  safely  buried  and  from  that  day  onwards 
the  Ksatriyas  and  the  Bhargavas  became  enemies.  The 
Bhrgus  were  hunted  down  by  the  Ksatriya  kings  and  the 
Bhargavas  frightened  by  this  move  left  their  abode  and 
went  and  hid  in  Caves  in  mountains  far  away.  Among 
those  who  thus  fled  was  Arusi,  wife  of  Cyavana.  Arusi 
was  pregnant  at  that  time  and  she  hid  her  'Garbha'  in 
her  thighs  while  ileeing.  A  brahmin  woman  who  saw 
this  went  and  informed  the  Ksatt  ivas  and  they  imme- 
diately went  and  caught  hold  of  her.  Then  the  thigh 
broke  and  a  boy  came  out  of  it.  Because  he  was  born 
from  the  thighs  the  boy  was  named  Aurva.  (Oru  = 
Thigh  and  so,  born  of  a  thigh).  (Chapter  179,  Adi 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

3)  The  effulgence  of  Aurvz.     Aurva  was  born  with  fiery 
radiance  and  the  sudden  effulgence  made  the  Ksatriya 
Kings  blind.  Frightened  they  craved    for   pardon  and 
praised  him.  They  got  back  their  eyesight  then. 

4)  Aurva  and  Badavagni.     Aurva  bore    a   deep  grudge 
against   the   Ksatriyas  who   had    massacred    his  fore- 
fathers.  Aurva    started  doing  rigorous  penance  and  by 
the  force  of  his  austerities  the  world  started  to  burn.  At 
that  stage  the  Pitrs  appeared  before  him  and  persuaded 
him    to  withdraw   from   his  penance.  Aurva  then  told 
them  thus;  ''Pitrs,  while  I  was  lying  in  the  thigh-womb 
of  my  mother  I  heard  hideous  groans  from  outside  and 
they  were  of  our  mothers  when  they  saw  the   heads    of 
our  fathers  being  cutoff  by  the  swords  of  the  Ksatriyas. 
Even  from  the  womb  itself  I   nurtured  a  fierce  hatred 
towards   the  Ksatriyas.    No    helping  hand    was  raised 
before  the  pitiable  wails  of  our  mothers". 

The  Pitrs  were  astounded  at  the  firmness  of  the  vow  of 
Aurva  and  horrified  at  the  thought  of  what  would 
happen  if  the  penance  was  continued.  They  pleaded 
again  to  cease  his  austerities  and  then  submitting  to 
their  request  Aurva  withdrew  the  fire  of  his  penance 
and  forced  it  down  into  the  sea.  It  is  now  believed 
that  this  fire  taking  the  shape  of  a  horse-head  is  still 
living  underneath  the  sea  vomiting  heat  at  all  times. 
This  fire  is  called  Badavagni.  More  about  this  can  be 
had  under  the  head  Badavagni.  (Chapter  180,  Adi 
Parva,  M.B.). 

5)  Aurva  and  the  birth  of  Sagira.     Ayodhya   was   once 
ruled  by  a  celebrated  King  of  Iksvaku  dynasty    named 
Subahu.  He  had  as  his  wife  Yadavl  a  good  natured  and 
well  behaved   woman  who  was  a  gem  among  queens. 
One  day  Talajamgha    a   King    of  the    Hehaya  line  of 
rulers    who   was    then  the  King  of  Mahismatl  defeated 
Subahu  in  a  battle.  Yadavl  was  then  pregnant.  Jealous 
co-wives   poisoned    her  ;   Yadivl   did    not  die  but  the 
poison  affected  the  child  in  the  womb. 

After  the  defeat,  and  Yadavl  went  and  stayed 
with  Aurva  in  his  asrima.  For  seven  years  they  lived 
there  and  then  Subahu  died.  Grief-stricken  Yadavl  was 
about  to  jump  into  the  funeral  pyre  and  end  her  life 
when  Aurva  stopped  her  from  the  act  pointing  out  that 
she  was  soon  to  deliver  a  child.  After  a  few  months  she 
delivered  a  son  and  Aurva  called  him  'Sagara'  meaning 
one  with  'gara'  (poison)  in  him.  (Brahmanda  Purana, 
Chapters  16,  17). 

6)  A-trva    and  the   sister   of  Giruda.     Garuda,  son   of 
Vinata,  had  a  sister  named  Sumati.  Upaminyu,  a  sage, 
wanted  to  marry  her  but  neither  she  nor    her    relatives 
liked   it.  Enraged  at  this  the  sage  cursed  Sumati  saying 




that  the  brahmin  who  married  her  would  have  his  head 
burst.  The  marriage  of  Sumati  thus  remained  a  prob- 
lem for  her  parents.  There  was  a  friend  of  Vinata,  a 
sannyasinl,  living  in  a  forest  and  to  find  a  way  to  escape 
from  the  curse  Vinata  sent  Garuda  to  her.  The  sannya- 
sinl advised  Garuda  to  approach  Aurva  to  find  a  solution 
for  the  problem  and  Aurva  was  therefore  approached 
for  advice. 

It  was  at  this  time  that  the  people  of  Ayodhya.  came  in 
search  of  Subahu  and  Yadavl  who  had  left  them  years 
before.  When  they  knew  of  Subahu's  death  they  were 
plunged  in  sorrow  but  were  glad  to  know  a  son  of 
Subahu,  Sagara,  had  grown  up  to  be  a  successor  to 
Subahu.  When  Garuda  made  Aurva  acquainted  with 
the  pitiable  tale  of  his  sister  Aurva  decreed  that  Sumati 
should  marry  a  Ksatriya  instead  of  a  brahmin  and  thus 
tide  over  the  curse.  He  then  asked  Sagara  to  marry 
Sumati  and  blessed  them  saying  that  Sagara  would  one 
day  become  an  emperor  and  perform  an  Asvamedha 
yaga.  Aurva  then  sent  Sagara  along  with  the  people 
to  Ayodhya  where  Sagara  after  defeating  all  his  enemies 
became  the  emperor  of  Bharatavarsa.  (Brahmanda 
Purana,  Chapters  18-21 ). 

7)  Sagara  s  sons   and  how   Aurva    helped   in  getting   them. 
Sagara  ruled  the  land  for  three  thousand  years.  He  had 
besides  Sumati  another  wife,  Kesini.  Both  of  them  bore 
no  sons  for  Sagara.  Dejected  he  entrusted  the   adminis- 
tration   of   the   state  with  his  ministers  and  left  for  the 
asrama   of  Aurva.   Aurva  blessed  them  and  prophesied 
that  Kesini  would  deliver  a  son  to  continue  the  dynasty 
and  that  Sumati  would  deliver  sixty  thousand   sons   of 
no  great   use    at  all.  Sagara  and  his  wives,  returned  to 
the  palace    and   very  soon  both  his  wives  became  preg- 
nant.   In   due  time    Kesini    delivered  a   son  who   was 
named  Asamanjas.  But  Sumati  gave  birth  to  a  lump  of 
flesh.   Greatly   pained    the    King  was  about  to  throw  it 
away  when  Aurva  appeared  there  and  stopped  him  from 
doing  that.    He    directed   him  to  cut  the  piece  of  flesh 
into  sixty  thousand  pieces  and  put  one  piece  each  in  a 
jar  of  ghee.  Every  year  one  prince  would  be  born  from 
one   of  them.    Thus  Sumati   got    sixty   thousand  sons. 
(Brahmanda  Purana,  Chapter  92). 

8)  Teaching  of  Aurva.     In   the  evening  of  his  life  Sagara 
went  and   stayed   in  the  asrama  of  Aurva.  Aurva  gave 
him    instructions  on  many  a  divine  subject.  He  taught 
him  about   the    importance   of  the  four  aSramas,  the 
rituals   to    be   practised  by  the  different  castes  of  Brah- 
mana,   Ksatriya,    Vaisya    and    Sddra  and   many  such 
other  things.    Finally  Aurva  gave  Sagara  Brahmajnana. 
(Chapter  8,  Ariisam  3,  Visnu  Purana). 

9)  Aurvdsrami.     All    the   Bhargava  rsis  together    once 
stayed  in  the   asrama  of  Aurva.  Parasurama  visited  the 
aSrama   one  day  during  that  time  and  paid  respects  to 
Bhrgu,  Khyati,  wife  of  Bhrgu,    Cyavana,  son  of  Bhrgu 
and   Aurva,    son   of    Cyavana.    (Brahmanda     Purana, 
Chaptre  63). 

AURVA  II.  A  brahmin  living  in  the  country  of  Malava. 
This  brahmin  got  a  daughter  named  Samika  by  his  wife 
Sumedha.  She  was  married  very  early  to  Mandara,  son 
of  Dhaumyaka  and  disciple  of  Saunaka.  After  some 
days  when  Mandara  found  his  wife  fully  grown  he  went 
to  Aurva  to  bring  his  wife  home.  Aurva  sent  them  both 
to  the  house  of  Mandara  with  his  blessings.  On  their 
way  home  they  met  the  Maharsi  Bhusundi  and  burst 
into  laughter  at  his  sight.  The  sage  cursed  them  and 

the    feet    of  a  sage  named  Mahodara 
going    that  way.    The  skull  went  deep 

made  them  into  two  trees.  When  Aurva  found  his 
daughter  and  son-in-law  missing  he  started  a  search  for 
them.  Then  he  came  to  know  that  both  of  them  had 
changed  into  trees  by  a  curse.  Aurva  and  his  wife  then 
prayed  to  God  for  help.  Aurva  then  lived  in  the  tree 
of  Sama  in  the  shape  of  Agni  and  Saunaka  made  an 
idol  of  Ganapati  with  the  root  of  the  Mandara  tree  and 
worshipped  him.  Ganapati  was  pleased  by  the  devotional 
deeds  of  Aurva  and  Saunaka  and  changed  the  trees 
again  into  Samika  and  Mandara.  (Ganesa  Purana) . 

AUSANAS  (Kapalamocana).  A  holy  place  on  the 
banks  of  the  river,  Sarasvatl.  Brahma,  the  devas  and 
many  maharsis  lived  here  once.  (Chapter  83,  Vana 
Parva) . 

This   place   is    called  Kapalamocana  also.   There  is    a 
story  behind  the  place  getting  this  name- 
At  the  forest  of  Dandaka  Sri  Rama  killed  many  demons. 
The   force    of  the  arrows  took  the  skulls  of  the  demons 
to   far  off  places    in  the  forest.  One   of  the  skulls  thus 
sent  far  fell  on 
who  was    then 

into  his  foot  and  not  only  did  it  wound  his  foot 
but  it  stuck  to  his  foot  so  hard  that  it  could  not 
be  drawn  out  also.  With  his  foot  in  pains  the  sage 
visited  all  the  holy  places  but  with  no  relief  to  his  pain. 
At  last  Mahodara  came  to  AuSanasa  and  to  his  surprise 
the  skull  came  off  from  his  foot  healing  his  wound.  He 
remained  there  for  some  time  and  obtained  many  divine 
attainments.  From  then  onwards  the  place  was  called 
'Kapalamocana'.  After  this  incident  Brahma,  Visvamitra, 
Balabhadiarama  and  many  such  divine  persons  visited 
the  place.  (Chapter  39,  Salya  Parva,  M.B.) 

AUSlJA  I.  A  King  of  ancient  India.  He  equalled 
Indra.  (Sloka  226,  Chapter  1,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

AUSlJA  II.  An  ancient  sage.  There  is  a  reference  to  this 
sage  who  is  the  son  of  Angiras  in  Rgveda.  This  rsi  was 
a  brilliant  member  of  the  royal  council  of  Dharma- 
putra.  (Chapter  208,  Sand  Parva,  M.B.) . 

AUSlNARA  (AUSINARI).  Sibi,  son  of  the  King  of 
Usinara.  See  under  Sibi. 

AUSlNARl  (USINARA).  A  Sudra  girl  born  in  the 
country  of  Usinara.  Gautama  Muni  got  his  sons 
Kaksivan  and  others  of  this  girl.  (Sloka  5,  Chapter  21, 
Sabha  Parva,  M.B.). 

AUSI^lKA(M).  An  ancient  place  in  India.  The  King 
of  this  country  paid  respects  to  Dharmaputra  offering 
him  several  gifts.  (Sloka  17,  Chapter  51,  Sabha  Parva, 

AUTATHYA.     Son  of  Utathya  (See  under  Utathya) . 

AUVVAYAR.  A  celebrated  Tamil  poetess.  She  was  born 
in  a  Paraya  (lowest  of  the  Hindu  castes)  family.  Her 
mother  left  her  as  soon  as  she  was  delivered  and  a 
low  caste  Sudra  brought  her  up.  She  lived  for  240  years 
before  she  left  on  a  long  journey  never  to  return.  She 
wrote  several  books  in  Tamil.  The  important  ones  are 
Atticuti,  Kontaiventa,  Mutturai,  Natvali,  Katvali 
slukka,  Nannutkova,  Nantanikova,  Aruntamilmala, 
Darsanappattu,  and  Jnanakurul.  She  has  made  a  dictio- 
nary in  verses  also. 

AVABHRTHAM.  The  bath  taken  at  the  end  of  a  sacri- 

"Then  all  the  Ksatriya  Kings  approached  Dharma- 
taniija  (Dharmaputra)  who  had  completed  successfully, 
under  the  protection  of  the  Mighty  Lord  of  the  bow, 
the  cudgel  and  the  wheel,  the  great  sacrifice  of  the  Raja- 




suya    (imperial  inauguration)  and  taken  the  avabhrta- 
snana  (the  bath  at  the  end  of  the  sacrifice) ." 
(Mahabharata,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter45,  Stanzas  40, 41) . 

AVAClNA.  The  son  born  to  Jayatsena,  a  King  of  the 
Piiru  dynasty,  by  his  wife  Susrava  the  princess  of 
Vidarhha.  To  him  was  born  Ariha  of  Maryada  the 
princess  of  Vidarbha.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  95, 
Stanzas  17  and  18). 

AVADHtfTESVARA.  An  incarnation  of  Siva.  Once 
Indra  and  Brhaspati  went  to  Kailasa  to  do  homage  to 
Siva  who  clad  in  air  only  hindered  their  way.  Indra 
requested  that  person  to  get  out  of  the  way.  He  request- 
ed repeatedly  several  times  but  in  vain.  Indra  who  got 
angry  took  his  weapon  ofVajra.  But  Siva  froze  it.  More- 
over fire  emanated  from  his  eye  on  the  forehead.  At  the 
request  of  Bi'haspati  Siva  turned  the  fire  from  his  eye 
towards  Lavana  Samudra  (the  sea  of  Salt).  Jalandhara 
who  was  killed  by  Siva  had  his  origin  in  this  fire. 
(Siva  Purana) . 

AVAGAHA.  A  warrior  of  the  Vrsni  dynasty.  (Maha- 
bharata, Drona  Parva,  Chapter  1 1,  Stanza  27) . 

AVAISAKHA.'    (See  Dhanasarma). 

AVAKlR^A(M) .  A  holy  place  on  the  bank  of  the  river 
Sarasvatl.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  41). 

AVANTI.  A  country  called  Malava  in  ancient 
India.  The  famous  Ujjayini  was  the  capital  of  Avanti. 
This  city  is  situated  on  the  bank  of  Sipra.  The  renown- 
ed poets  such  as  Kalidasa  and  others,  lived  in  this 
city.  This  is  one  of  the  seven  cities  considered  to  be 
capable  of  giving  Moksa  (heavenly  bliss).  (M.B., 
Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Stanza  43). 

AVANTI  VAMSA.  (The  Dynasty  of  Avanti).  The 
dynasty  of  Avanti  Kings  had  its  origin  in  the  Yadu 
dynasty.  Candra  was  born  to  Atri  the  son  of  Brahma. 
Budha  was  born  to  Candra,  Pururavas  to  Budha,  Ayus 
to  Pururavas,  Nahusa  to  Ayus,  Yayati  to  Nahusa  and 
Yadu  to  Yayati.  Yadu  had  five  sons,  the  eldest  of  whom 
was  known  by  the  name  Sahasrajit.  The  rest  of  them 
were  known  as  Nllanjika,  Raghu,  Krosfu  and  Satajit. 
Sahasrajit  had  three  sons  called  Satajit,  Haihaya  and 
Renuhaya.  Dharmanetra  was  born  to  Haihaya,  Sahana 
to  Dharmanetra,  Mahiman  to  Sahana,  Bhadrasena  to 
Mahiman,  Durgama  to  Bhadrasena  and  Kanaka  to 
Durgama.  From  Kanaka  were  born  the  four  sons  Krta- 
vlrya,  Krtagni,  Karaviraand  Krtaujas.  Arjuna(Kartta- 
vlryarjuna)  was  born  as  the  son  of  Krtavlrya. 
Arjuna  renowned  as  Karttavirya  became  the  supreme 
lord  of  the  earth  comprising  the  Saptadvipa  (Seven 
Islands)  by  the  merits  of  his  penance.  He  got  invinci- 
bility and  thousand  hands  in  battles,  as  boons.  He 
performed  ten  thousand  sacrifices  all  in  conformity 
with  the  rules  and  regulations.  To  escape  from  loss  of 
wealth  one  had  only  to  remember  his  name.  It  was 
ordered  that  Kings  other  than  Karttavirya,  however 
great  the  extent  of  their  might  and  prowess,  and  the 
number  of  sacrifices,  offering  of  alms  and  penance  done 
be,  would  not  stand  on  a  par  with  him. 
Karttavirya  had  a  hundred  sons,  of  whom  the  most 
famous  were  Surasena,  Sura,  Dhrsta,  Krsna,  and  Jaya- 
dhvaja.  Jayadhvaja  the  most  renowned  of  these  five 
ruled  in  Avanti  as  King.  Talajarigha  who  had  several 
sons,  was  born  from  Jayadhvaja. 

*See  Amsavatara. 

The  family  of  the  Haihayas  was  split  into  five.  They 
were  the  Bhojas,  the  Avanti  family,  the  Vltihotra  fami- 
ly, the  Svayarhjfita  family  and  the  Saundikeya  family. 
(Agm  Purana,  Chapter  275) 

AVARODHA.     A  King  of  the  family  ofBharata. 

AVASANAM.  An  ancient  Bath  m  Bharata.  One  could 
attain  the  merits  of  Sahasragodana  (giving  a  thousand 
cows  as  alms)  by  bathing  in  this  holy  bath.  (M.B., 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter  82,  Stanza  128). 

AVATARA.  (Incarnation) .  The  incarnations  of  Maha- 

1 )  General  information.  God  takes  three  kinds  of  incar- 
nations such  as  avatara,  aveSa  and  ariisa.  That  which 
has  full  power  is  avatara  ;  that  which  has  power  only 
for  the  time  being  is  avesa  and  partial  incarnation  in 
amSavatara. *  The  incarnations  of  Visnu  are  count- 
less. Hermits,  Manus,  Devas  (gods)  and  sons  of  Manus 
are  incarnations  in  part  (arhsavataras)  of  Visnu.  Com- 
plete avataras  are  ten  in  numbers  of  which  Balabhadra 
Rama  is  not  considered  as  an  avatara  by  some.  In- 
stead of  him  they  place  Buddha. 

b)  Reason  for  the  incarnations.  Mahavisnu  has  taken  so 
many  incarnations  in  the  world.  In  the  Sri  Mahadevi 
Bhagavata  a  story  occurs  to  the  effect  that  Mahavisnu 
was  forced  to  take  so  large  a  number  of  incarnations 
due  to  the  curse  of  the  great  hermit  Bhrgu.  The  story 
is  as  follows  :  KaSyapa  had  a  son  named  Kasipu.  He 
was  daring  and  brave  and  ruled  the  country  as  an 
enemy  of  the  Gods.  There  arose  a  severe  battle  between 
the  gods  and  the  Asuras.  Kasipu  was  killed  in  that 
battle.  After  Kasipu  his  son  Prahlada  became  King. 
He  too  was  an  enemy  of  the  Gods.  So  there  was  a 
battle  between  Indra  and  Prahlada.  The  battle  conti- 
nued for  a  hundred  years.  At  last  Prahlada  was  defeat- 
ed. He  felt  very  sorry  at  the  defeat.  So  he  anointed 
Bali,  son  of  Virocana,  as  King  and  leaving  the  Kingdom 
he  went  to  the  Gandhamadana  and  began  to  do 
penance.  The  fight  continued  between  Bali  and  Indra. 
In  this  fight  Mahavisnu  helped  Indra.  The  Asuras  were 
completely  destroyed.  The  defeated  Asuras  went  to 
their  teacher  Sukra  who  promised  to  protect  them  by 
spells  and  incantations  and  herbs.  The  Gods  knew 
that  Sukra  had  undertaken  to  protect  the  asuras. 
Leaving  the  asuras  behind,  Sukra  went  to  Kailasa  to 
get  more  power  of  spells  and  incantations  from  Siva. 
Before  going  to  Kailasa  Sukra  had  asked  the  Asuras 
to  wait  for  him  with  faith.  After  this  the  Asuras  sent 
Prahlada  to  the  Gods  for  a  truce.  Prahlada,  though  an 
Asura  was  in  good  favour  with  the  Gods.  He  reached 
the  court  of  Indra  and  said,  "Gods,  we  have  no  desire 
at  all  for  war.  We  have  decided  to  spend  the  remain- 
ing period  in  penance  wearing  barks  of  trees  and  tufts 
of  hair.  How  wicked  a  deed  is  battle  and  how  delight- 
ful it  is  to  become  a  devotee  of  God  !  So  hereafter  you 
will  not  be  troubled  by  us.  Likewise  I  hope  you  will 
not  do  us  innocent  people  any  harm." 
The  gods  believed  Prahlada.  The  Asuras,  in  the  guise 
of  hermits  waited  for  Sukra  in  the  hermitage  of  Kas- 
yapa.  Sukra  reached  Kailasa  and  bowed  before  Siva  and 
requested  that  he  might  be  given  the  power  of  defeat- 
ing the  Gods  by  some  means  quite  unknown  to  Brhas- 
pati the  teacher  of  the  devas  (Gods).  Siva  was  in 




trouble.  He  could  refuse  neither  Sukra  nor  the  Gods. 
At  last  he  told  hermit  Sukra  that  to  come  by  such  a 
spell  he  had  to  stand  head  downwards,  inhaling  smoke 
for  a  thousand  years.  Siva  said  so  thinking  that  when 
the  dreadful  nature  of  the  feat  was  considered,  Sukra 
might  desist  from  the  attempt.  But  Sukra  began  that 
penance  instantly. 

The    Gods   understood  everything.  The    deceit    of  the 
Asuras,  the  crookedness  of  Sukra  all  were  now  clear  to 
them..  They   trembled  with    fear  and  began  to  consult 
how   to  get    over   the    difficult   situation.  Finally  they 
decided   to    go  to   war  with  the  Asuras.  The  gods  did 
accordingly.  The  Asuras  were   in    trouble.  They   were 
not   strong   enough  to  face  the    Gods.  So  they  all  went 
to  Kavyamata,  the  mother  of  Sukra.  The  devas  (gods) 
with  Mahavisnuat  their  head  chased  the  Asuras.  Kavya- 
mata,   by    the   merits   of  her     devotional    meditation 
petrified  Mahavisnu  and  Indra.  Mahavisnu  thought  of 
his  Sudarsana  (wheel-weapon  of  Visnu)  which  instant- 
ly made  its  appearance  and   cut  off  the  head  of  Kavya- 
mata. The  great  hermit  Bhrgu  got  angry  because  Maha- 
visnu committed  woman-slaughter,  and  cursed  him  thus : 
"You    are   a    crooked   being,    a    viper,  a    deceit.    The 
hermits   who   adore  you  as    the  seat  of  all  that  is  good 
are   mere   fools;    you  are  wicked,  of  a  black    character, 
and    I    curse   you    to  take  countless  incarnations  in  the 
world,    and   painful  confinement   by  and  by  because  of 
your  sins."    (Sri  Mahadevi  Bhagavata,  4th  Skandha). 
Thus  having  cursed  Visnu,  the  hermit  Bhrgu  took  some 
water  from  his  water-pot  and  sprinkled  it  on  the  face  of 
Kavyamata,  who  woke  up    as  if  from    sleep.   (For   the 
remaining  portion  of  the  story  see  Sukra). 
2) Dasavataras.  (The  ten  Incarnations).  Owing  to  the  curse 
of  Bhrgu,  mentioned  above,  Mahavisnu    had  to  under- 
take so  many  incarnations,  complete  as  well  as    partial. 
Complete   incarnations   are    ten  in    number.    They  are 
called  Dasavataras  (The  Ten  Incarnations) . 
Matsyah  Kurmo  Varahasca 
Narasirhhaica  Vamanah  / 
Ramo  Rama  sea  Ramasca 
Krsnah  Kalkir  janardanah  // 

Matsya'(Fish),  Kurma  (Turtle) ,  Varaha  (Pig),  Nara- 
sirhha  (Lion-man),  Vamana  (Dwarf),  Rama  (Parasu- 
rama) ,  Rama  (Sri  Rama) ,  Rama  (Balabhadrarama) , 
Krsna  (Sii  Krsna),  Kalki  (Yet  to  come) .  These  are 
the  ten  incarnations  of  Janardana. 
The  dasavataras  are  described  one  by  one  below. 
1)  Matsyavatara.  (Fish  Incarnation) .  To  KaSyapa,  the 
son  of  Marici,  and  the  grandson  of  Brahma  a  son 
was  born,  by  his  wife  Aditi.  He  was  called  Vivasvan 
and  the  Manu  who  was  the  son  of  Vivasvan  is  known 
as  Vaivasvata  Manu  or  Satyavrata  Manu.  It  was  dur- 
ing the  time  of  this  Manu  that  Visnu  incarnated  as  a 
Matsya  (fish). 

Once,  while  Brahma  was  reciting  the  Vedas  (the  Scrip- 
tures) Hayagriva,  an  asura,  stole  the  Vedas  from  the 
side  of  Brahma  and  with  them  he  went  under  water  to 
the  bottom  of  the  ocean  and  hid  himself  there.  So 
Mahavisnu  decided  to  take  the  form  of  a  fish  to  recover 
the  stolen  Vedas. 

Vaivasvata  Manu,  the  first  and  foremost  of  the  godfear- 
ing, was  once  doing  penance  in  a  place  known  as  Badari. 
He  got  down  into  the  river  Krtamala  to  take  a  bath. 
Then  a  small  fish  said  to  the  Manu  :  "Oh  King,  I  am 
afraid  of  large  fishes.  So  please  don't  forsake  me".  Hear- 

ing this  the  Kind  Manu  took  the  fish  in  his  hand  and 
put  it  in  an  earthenware  pot  and  brought  it  up.  In  a 
few  days  the  fish  began  to  grow.  When  the  pot  became 
insufficient  the  King  put  it  in  a  larger  pot.  When  that 
also  became  too  small,  the  King  put  the  fish  in  a  pond. 
When  the  pond  could  not  hold  the  fish  any  longer  the 
King  put  it  in  the  Ganges  at  its  request.  After  a  few  days 
the  Ganges  also  became  too  small  for  the  fish.  Finally 
the  fish  told  the  King:  "Oh,  King,  within  seven  days 
there  will  be  a  great  flood  in  the  world.  You  should 
make  a  boat  and  take  the  seven  hermit-sages  with  you 
in  the  boat  and  escape.  I  will  help  you." 
Hearing  this  he  got  an  immensely  large  boat  ready  and 
obeyed  the  instructions  of  the  fish.  Within  seven  days 
rain  started  in  torrents.  Everything  in  the  world,  the 
moving  and  the  not  moving,  were  under  the  flood.  A 
horn  began  to  sprout  from  the  head  of  the  fish.  Manu 
tied  his  boat  on  that  horn.  The  fish  reached  the  summit 
of  the  Himalayas  with  the  boat,  which  was  tied  to  the 
highest  peak.  Since  the  peak  came  to  be  called  'Nau- 
bandhana  Srnga'  (The  peak  to  which  boat  is  tied) . 
The  rain  ceased  to  pour.  It  was  seen  that  everything 
in  the  world  had  been  destroyed  except  the  Manu  and 
the  seven  hermit-sages  and  some  of  the  germs,  saved 
in  the  boat.  (This  story  occurs  in  the  great  Hindi  work 
'Kamayani'  of  JayaSankar  Prasad).  (M.B.,  Aranya 
Parva,  Chapter  187;  Agni  Purana,  Chapter  2;  Bhagavata 
8th  Skandha,  Chapter  24) . 

This  story  of  the  incarnation  of  Visnu  as  fish  is  seen  in 
the  Bible  figuratively.  "In  the  order  of  the  generations 
of  Adam,  the  first  creation  of  God,  Seth,  Enos;  Kainan, 
Mahalil,  Jared,  Enoch,  Methuselah,  Lamech  and  Noah 
were  born.  When  Noah  was  five  hundred  years  old  he 
begot  Shem,  Ham  and  Japheth. 

There  was  a  great  flood  during  the  time  of  Noah.  God 
said  to  him  :  "The  end  of  all  flesh  is  come  before  one; 
for  the  earth  is  filled  with  violence  through  them,  and 
behold,  I  will  destroy  them  with  the  earth.  Make  thee 
an  ark  of  gopher  wood;  rooms  shalt  thou  make  in  the 
ark  and  shalt  paint  it  within  and  without  with  pitch. 
And  this  is  the  fashion  which  thou  shalt  make  it  of.  The 
length  of  the  ark  should  be  three  hundred  cubits,  the 
breadth  of  it  fifty  cubits,  and  the  height  of  it  thirty 
cubits.  A  window  shalt  thou  make  to  the  ark  and  in  a 
cubit  shall  thou  finish  it  above  and  the  door  of  the  ark 
shalt  thou  set  in  the  side  thereof,  with  lower,  second  and 
third  stories  shalt  thou  make  it.  And  behold,  I,  even  I, 
do  bring  a  flood  of  water  up  on  the  earth,  to  destroy  all 
flesh  wherein  is  the  breadth  of  life  from  under  heaven 
and  everything  that  is  in  the  earth  shall  die.  But  with 
thee  will  I  establish  my  covenant,  and  thou  shalt  come 
into  the  ark,  thou  and  thy  sons  and  thy  wife  and  thy 
sons'  wives  with  thee,  and  of  every  living  thing  of  all 
flesh,  two  of  every  sort,  shalt  thou  bring  into  the  ark  to 
keep  them  alive  with  thee;  they  shall  be  male  and  fe- 
male. Of  fowls  after  their  kind,  and  of  cattle  after 
their  kind,  and  of  every  creeping  thing  of  the  earth 
after  their  kind,  two  of  every  sort  shall  come  unto  thee 
to  keep  them  alive.  And  take  thou  unto  thee  of  all  food 
that  is  eaten  and  thou  shalt  gather  it  to  thee,  and  it 
shall  be  for  food  for  thee  and  for  them."  Thus  did  Noah 
according  to  all  that  God  commanded  him,  so  did  he. 
And  the  Lord  said  unto  Noah,  "Come  thou  and  all  thy 
house  into  the  ark,  for  thee  Have  I  seen  righteous  be- 
fore me  in  this  generation.  Of  every  clean  beast  thou 




shalt  take  to  thee  by  sevens  the  male  and  his  female 
and  of  beasts  that  are  not  clean  by  two  the  male  and 
his  female.  Of  fowls  also  of  the  air  by  sevens  the  male 
and  the  female  to  keep  seed  alive  up  on  the  face  oi  all 
the  earth.  For  yet  seven  days  and  I  will  cause  it  to  rain 
up  on  the  earth  forty  days  and  forty  nights,  and  every 
living  substance  that  I  have  made  will  I  destroy  from 
off  the  earth."  And  Noah  did  according  unto  all  that 
the  Lord  commanded  him. 

And  Noah  was  six  hundred  years  old  when  the  flood  of 
waters  was  up  on  the  earth.  And   Noah   went    in,    and 
his  sons  and  his  wife  and  his  sons'  wives  with  him    into 
the    ark   because    of  the  waters    of  the  flood.  Of  clean 
beasts  and  of  beasts  that  are  not  clean  and  of  fowls  and 
of  everything  that  creepeth  upon  the  earth.  There  went 
in  two  and  two  unto  Noah  into  the  ark    the   male    and 
the  female  as  God  had  commanded  Noah.  And  it  came 
to  pass  after  seven  days  that  the  waters  of  the  flood  were 
upon  the  earth.  In  the    six  hundredth  year  of  Noah's 
life  in  the  second  month  on  the  seventeenth  day  of  the 
month    the    same   day   were  all  the    fountains   of  the 
great  deep  broken  up  and  the  windows  of  heaven  were 
opened    and   the  rain   was  up  on    the    earth    for  forty 
days    and    forty  nights.  In  the  self-same   day   entered 
Noah  and   Shem,    and  Hani   and  japheth    the  sons  of 
Noah    and  Noah's  wife   and    the    wives   of  the    sons 
with  them  into  the    ark.    They  and  every  beast    after 
his    kind    and    all     the     cattle    after    their   kind  and 
every    creeping    thing  that  creepeth   upon    the   earth 
and    every  fowl  after  his  earth    after   his   kind,  every 
bird    of  every  sort.     And   they    went    in   unto   Noah 
into    the  ark.    two  and  two   of  all  flesh    wherein  is  the 
breadth    of  life.    And  they  that  went  in,  went  in    male 
and  female   of  all  flesh  as  God    had    commanded    him 
and  the  Lord  shut  him  in.  And  the  flood  was  forty  days 
upon  the  earth,  and  the  waters  increased    and  bore  up 
the  ark  and  it  was  lifted  up  above  the  earth.  And    the 
waters  prevailed  and  were  increased    greatly  upon  the 
earth  and  the    ark  went  up    on  the  face  of  the  waters. 
And    the  waters  prevailed    exceedingly  upon  the  earth 
and  all  the  high  hills  that  were  under  the  whole  heaven 
were    covered.  Fifteen  cubits    upward  did   the  waters 
prevail    and  the  mountains  were  covered.  And  all  the 
flesh  died  that  moved  upon  the  earth,  both  of  fowl  and 
of  cattle  and  of  beast  and  of  every  creeping  thing  that 
creepeth  up  on  the  earth,  and  every  man.  All  in  whose 
nostrils  was  the  breadth  of  life,  of  all    that  was  in    the 
dry   land,  died-  And  every  living  substance   was    des- 
troyed which  was  up  on    the  face  of  the   ground  both 
man  and    cattle  and  the  creeping  things  and   the   fowl 
of  the  heaven,  and  they  were  destroyed  from  the  earth. 
And  Noah  only  remained   alive,    and  they    that    were 
with   him  in  the  ark.  And  the  waters    prevailed  upon 
the  earth  for  hundred  and  fifty  days. 
And  God     remembered  Noah  and   every   living    thing 
and  all    the  cattle    that  was  with    him  in  the   ark    and 
God  made    a  wind  to     pass    over   the  earth   and    the 
waters  became   calm.  The  fountains   also  of  the  deep 
and   the  windows  of  heaven  were  stopped  and  the  rain 
from  heaven  was  restrained.  And    the  waters   returned 
from  off  the  earth  continually  and  after  the  end  of  the 
hundred  and  fifty  days,  the  waters  were  abated.  And  the 
ark  rested  in  the  seventh  month  on  the  seventeenth  day 
of  the  month   upon  the  mountains  of  Ararat.    And  the 
waters   decreased  continually    until  the   tenth    month. 

In  the  tenth  month  on  the  first  day  of  the  month 
were  the  tops  of  the  mountains  seen.  And  it  came  to 
pass  at  the  end  of  forty  days  that  Noah  opened  the 
window  of  the  ark  which  he  had  made.  And  he  sent 
forth  a  raven  which  went  forth  to  and  fro  until  the  waters 
u vie  dried  up  from  oil  the  earth.  Also  he  sent  forth 
a  dove  from  him  to  see  if  the  waters  were  abated 
from  off  the  face  of  the  ground.  But  the  dove  found 
no  rest  for  the  sole  of  her  foot  and  she  returned 
unto  him  into  the  ark  for  the  waters  were  on 
the  face  of  the  whole  earth.  Then  Noah  put  forth 
his  hand  and  took  her  and  pulled  her  to  the  ark.  And 
he  stayed  yet  other  seven  days.  And  again  he  sent 
forth  the  dove  out  of  the  ark.  And  the  dove  came 
in  to  him  in  the  evening,  and  lo,  in  her  mouth 
was  an  olive  leaf  plucked  off.  So  Noah  knew  that 
the  waters  were  abated  from  off  the  earth.  And  he 
stayed  yet  other  seven  days  and  sent  forth  the  dove, 
which  returned  not  again  unto  him  anymore.  And  it 
came  to  pass  in  the  six  hundredth  and  first  year  in  the 
first  month,  the  first  day  of  the  month  the  waters  were 
dried  up  from  off  the  earth  and  Noah  removed  the 
covering  of  the  ark  and  looked  and  beheld  the  face  of 
the  ground  was  dry.  And  in  the  second  month  on  the 
seven  and  twentieth  day  of  the  month  was  the  earth 
dried.  And  God  spake  unto  Noah  saying:  ''Go  forth  of 
the  ark,  thou  and  thy  wife,  and  thy  sons  and  thy  sons' 
wives  with  thee.  Bring  forth  with  thee  every  living  thing 
that  is  with  thee,  of  all  flesh  both  of  fowl  and  of  cattle  and 
of  every  creeping  thing  that  creepeth  up  on  the  earth, 
that  they  may  breed  abundantly  in  the  earth  and  be 
fruitful  and  multiply  up  on  the  earth.  And  Noah  went 
forth  and  his  sons  and  his  wife  and  his  sons'  wives 
with  him.  Every  beast,  every  creeping  thing  and  every 
fowl  and  whatsoever  creep  up  on  the  earth  after  their 
kinds  went  forth  out  of  the  ark.  And  Noah  built  an 
altar  unto  the  Lord  and  took  of  every  clean  beast  and 
of  every  clean  fowl  and  offered  burnt  offerings  on  the 
altar.  And  the  Lord  smelt  a  sweet  savour  and  the  Lord 
said  in  his  heart  :  "I  will  not  again  curse  the  ground 
anymore  for  man's  sake.  For  the  imagination  of  man's 
heart  is  evil  from  his  youth.  Neither  will  I  again  smite 
anymore  every  thing  as  I  have  done.  While  the  earth 
remaineth  seed  time  and  harvest  and  cold  and  heat 
and  summer  and  winter  and  day  and  nignt  shall  not 
cease.  (Holy  Bible,  Genesis,  Chapters  6,  7  and  8) . 
2 )  Kurmdvatdra.  (Incarnation  as  a  tortoise) .  Long  ago 
when  Durvasas  visited  the  realm  of  Gods  he  presented 
Devendra  with  a  garland  made  of  flowers  of  exquisite 
fragrance.  Indra  tied  it  on  to  the  tusk  of  Airavata  (the 
elephant  of  Indra) .  When  the  beetles  which  gathered 
on  the  garland  for  honey  became  a  nuisance,  Aira- 
vata destroyed  that  garland.  Durvasas  who  got  angry 
at  this  cursed  the  gods  as  a  whole  that  they  would  get 
wrinkles  and  grey  hair.  The  gods  were  advised  by 
Mahavisnu  that  if  they  got  Ambrosia  (Amna — celestial 
honey)  from  the  sea  of  Milk  by  churning  it  they  could 
escape  from  this.  Accordingly  the  Gods  called  the 
asuras  for  help,  and  they  approached  the  sea  of  Milk. 
They  made  use  of  the  Mountain  of  Mandara  as  churn- 
drill  and  the  huge  snake  Vasuki  as  churning  rope,  and 
the  churning  commenced.  The  gods  took  hold  of  the 
tail  of  the  snake  and  as  the  churning  was  proceeding 
the  churn-drill,  the  mountain  of  Mandara,  having  no 
fixation  at  the  bottom  sank  down.  Then  Mahavisnu 




took  the  form  of  a  turtle,  and  got  under  the  Mandara 
mountain  and  lifted  it  up  on  his  back.  By  the  force  of 
lifting  it  went  higher  and  higher  up.  Then  Mahavisnu  took 
theformof  an  eagle  and  sat  on  the  top  of  the  mountain 
and  it  came  down  a  little  and  placed  itself  in  the  right 
position.  (Bhagavata,  Skandha  8,  Chapter  7;  Agni 
Purana,  Chapter  3;  Valmiki  Ramayana,  Balakanda, 
Sarga  45) . 

3)    Vardhavatara.  (Incarnation  as  a  Pig) .    Jayaand  Vijaya 
were  the   two  watchers  who  stood  at  the  gate  of  Maha- 
visnu. Once  the  great   hermit-sages  Sanaka  and  others 
reached  Vaikuntha  to  visit  Mahavisnu.  Then  Jaya  and 
Vijaya  treated  the  hermits  without  respect.  The  hermits 
cursed  them  that  they  would  become  Danavas    (Asuras 
or    giants).  They   also  said  that   when   they  were  slain 
thrice   by  Mahavisnu    they  would    reach    heaven.     At 
that  period  when    hermit    Kasyapa    was    carrying    on 
his  evening  prayer  and   devotional    rites,  his  wife  Diti 
approached   him   with  lustful  desire.  Kasyapa  told  her 
that    as    he   was    engaged  in    prayer  and  meditation  it 
was    not   proper    on  her  part  to  select   that   particular 
moment   for  her    lustful    desire.   But  she  persisted  and 
the    sage  yielded   and   out  of  that  union  two  sons  were 
born.  They  are  the  two  asuras  Hiranyaksa  and  Hiranya- 
kasipu.   Of  these    Hiranyaksa  was    the  incarnation   of 
Jaya  and  Hiranyakasipu   that    of  Vijaya.*    With    the 
birth  of  these  two  the  whole  world  began  to   tremble. 
These  two  asura  brothers  began  to  terrorize  the  world. 
They  wandered  about  causing  destruction  and  devasta- 
tion  wherever    they    went.  Once  Hiranyaksa  got  down 
into    the    ocean   and  began  to    beat  the   waves  in  the 
ocean    with    his  cudgel.    The  ocean  began  to  sway  and 
surge.    Varuna    (the    Lord  of  water)  was  terrified  and 
he   ran    to  Mahavisnu   and  sought  protection.    Maha- 
visnu took   the  form    of  a  Pig  and  came  to  the  ocean. 
When  Hiranyaksa  saw  Mahavisnu  he  took  the  earth  in 
his  hand  and  ran  to  Patala  (the  nether  world) .  Maha- 
visnu followed   him    and  killed  him  and  recovered  the 
earth.  (Bhagavata,  Skandha  3,  Chapter  18;  Bhagavata, 
Skandha  2,  Chapter  7  and  Agni  Purana,  Chapter  4) . 
4)   Narasimhdvatara.  (Incarnation  as  lion-man) .     With    the 
death  of  Hiranyaksa,  his  brother  HiranyakaSipu  became 
furious  more  than  ever.  He  wanted  to  avenge  the  death 
of  his  brother.  His  fury  was  turned  towards  Mahavisnu. 
So  he  got  on  the  top  of  the  Mountain  of  Mandara  and 
did  penance  before  Brahma  and  Brahma  appeared  and 
granted  him  boons,  one  of  which  was  that  nobody  but 
Visnu    should   be   able    to    kill   him.  He  returned  with 
gladness   and    began  to  roam  about  torturing  devotees 
of  Visnu  everywhere. 

A  son  named  Prahlada  was  born  to  him.  He  was  a  god- 
fearing child  and  from  birth  an  ardent  believer  in  Visnu. 
Hiranyakasipu  tried  his  utmost  to  change  his  son  to  a 
hater  of  Visnu.  He  got  a  special  teacher  for  the 
purpose  and  Prahlada  was  taken  to  the  house  of  the 
teacher  to  live  with  him  until  he  changed  his  mind.  The 
result  was  that  the  teacher  and  all  others  who  advised 
him  ultimately  became  believers  in  Visnu.  Anger  over- 
powered Hiranyakasipu.  Prahlada  was  thrown  before 
mad  elephants.  But  the  tusks  of  the  elephant  missed  the 
aim  and  were  driven  into  the  earth  and  broken.  Veno- 
mous snakes  were  employed  and  those  which  bit  him  had 
their  fangs  broken.  Finally  the  child  was  put  in  blazing 

fire.  But  the  child  felt  the  fire  to  be  cool  and  soothing. 
From  that  fire  a  ghost  arose  and  tried  to  kill  Prahlada. 
Instantly  the  Sudarsana,  the  wheel-weapon  of  Visnu 
came  down  and  cut  off  the  head  of  the  ghost.  Hiranya- 
kasipu jumped  with  anger  and  called  out.  "Where 
is  your  Visnu?"  His  son  replied  that  his  Visnu  dwelt 
in  every  movable  and  immovable  thing.  Hiranyakasipu 
kicked  at  a  stone  pillar  close  by  and  asked  him,  "Is 
your  Visnu  in  this  pillar?"  Prahlada  replied,  "My  Visnu 
is  in  Pillar  and  in  fibre".  Before  he  had  finished,  the 
Pillar  broke  open  and  a  monster  as  horrible  as  the 
Destroyer  Siva,  in  the  shape  of  a  lion-man  made  its 

"Mimamsamanasya  samuthito  'grato 
Nrsimharupastadalam  bhayanakarh 
Karaladamstram  Karavalacancala- 
Ksurantajihvam  bhrukutimukholbanam 
Stabdhordhvakarnam  girikandaradbhuta- 
vyattasyanasamhanubhedabhi  sanarh 
CandrarhSugauraischuritarh  tanuruhai- 
rvisvagbhujanikaSatarh  nakhayudham." 
"Before  him  who  was  waiting  with  curiosity  to  see  what 
would  happen,  with  eyes  blazing  as  molten  gold,  mouth 
wide  open  in  the  middle    of  long  bushy  mane,    tusks 
long  and  curved  and  protruding  fearfully,  tongue  sway- 
ing like  a  sword,  eyebrows  fierce  looking,  ears  standing 
erect  and  still,  two  nostrils  as  wide  and  deep  as  moun- 
tain canyons,  jaws  prominent  and  thick  and  broad  and 
set  with  fierceness,  colossal  body  reaching  the  sky,  neck 
very  thick  and  fat  and   short,  breast  excessively  broad 
and    strong,  waist  very  small  and  narrow,  body  thickly 
covered   with   bushy  hair    exuberantly    grown    and  as 
yellow  as  the  light  of  the  moon,  a  number  of  claws  very 
sharp    and    pointed,    the    horrid    monster    Narasirhha 
(Lion  with   human  head)    suddenly  appeared.  (Bhaga- 
vata, Skandha  7,  Chapter  8,  Stanzas  20-22). 
This  was  the  figure  of  Narasirhha.  Mr.  S.  Paramesvara 
Iyer,    Ulloor,    has   described  this  figure  in  his  "Bhakti- 
dipika"  as  follows  : 

"Glaring  eyes  burning  as  blazing  cinder,  tongue  as  a 
dagger  just  used  in  piercing  to  death,  neck  with  folds, 
eyebrows  looking  mad,  tusks  like  young  moon,  fierce 
face  with  bushy  mane  grown  to  it,  hair  long  and  sharp 
like  pointed  wire,  claws  looking  like  having  drunk  blood, 
body  shining  as  if  countless  suns  had  risen  together,  all 
combined  as  if  the  fire  of  anger  burning  inside  had 
incarnated,  in  the  shape  of  a  lion  up  to  neck  and 
human  shape  beyond  the  neck."  (Bhaktidtpika) 
The  horrid  monster  caught  hold  of  Hiranyakasipu  the 
King  of  the  Asuras,  pushed  him  to  the  ground  and 
opened  his  heart  with  its  fierce  claws.  Blood  sprouted 
like  a  spring.  With  great  ferocity  he  pulled  out  the  in- 
testines of  Hiranyaka^ipu  and  wore  them  round  his 
neck  as  a  garland  and  roared  loudly.  Prahlada,  with 
songs  of  praise  and  chanting  of  hymns  of  adoration 
pacified  the  stormy  Narasirhha  and  bowed  low  down 
before  him.  The  Narasirhha  was  pleased  with  the  devo- 
tion of  Prahlada.  He  blessed  the  child  and  then  dis- 
appeared. (Bhagavata,  Skandha  7,  Chapter  8). 

"•During  their  next  birth  they  made  their  appearance  as  Ravnca  and    Kumbhakarna  and  during  the  third  birth  they  were  Sisupala  and 




5)    Vdmandvatdra.  (Incarnation  as  a  Dwarf).  It  was  to  ex- 
pel the  Emperor  Mahabali,  that  Mahavisnu   incarnat- 
ed  as  a    dwarf.  To   Kasyapa,  the  son  of  Marici    and 
the  grandson  of  Brahma,   was  born  of  Dili,    Hiranya- 
kasipu.  And  from  Prahlada  the  son  of  Hiranyakasipu 
was  born  Virocana  and  Bali  was   the  son  of  Virocana. 
Bali  got    the  name    Mahabali   because  of   his  prowess. 
He   was    the  emperor    of  the   Asuras.  A    fierce  battle 
began  over  the  Ambrosia    got  from   churning    the  sea 
of  Milk,  between  the  Asuras  and  the  gods.  In  the  battle 
Indra   cut  Mahabali    down  with  his  Vajrayudha.  The 
Asuras   took    the    body    of  Mahabali    to    Patala     (the 
nether  world)  where  their  teacher  Sukra  brought  him  to 
life  again.  Then  Mahabali  worshipped    the  Bhargavas 
and  became   more  powerful    than  before  and  went  to 
heaven    again  and    renewed  the   battle.    This  time  he 
defeated  the  Gods  altogether  and  subjugated  the  realm 
of  the  Gods  who  were   scattered  to  all  sides.  The  devas 
or  gods  are  the  sons  of  KaSyapa  born  by  his  wife,  Aditi. 
She  felt  very  sorry  at  the  defeat  of  the  gods.  Seeing  that 
she  was  silent  and  sad   Kasyapa  asked  her  the  reason. 
She  replied  that  she  was  thinking  of  ways  to  enable  the 
gods  to  recover  their  lost  power  and  position.  Kasyapa 
advised    her  to   please  Mahavisnu  by   observing  Dva- 
dall    vrata  ( fast  of  the  twelfth  lunar  night) .  Aditi  did 
so  and  Visnu   appeared  before  her  and  asked  her  what 
she  desired.  Her  request  was  that  Visnu  should   take 
birth  in  her  womb  and  recover   Indra  to  his  lost  power 
and    position.    Thus  Visnu  took  birth  as  the  younger 
brother  of  Indra  in  the  shape  of  Vamana  (dwarf.) 
At  this  time  Emperor  Mahabali  was  celebrating  a  sacri- 
fice  on  the    bank  of  the  River  Narmada  after  having 
subjugated  the  whole  of  the  world.  A  large  number  of 
hermits  gathered  there.  Vamana  also  was  among  them. 
He    requested    Mahabali    to    grant   him    three   feet  of 
ground  as  alms.    The  teacher  Sukra  warned  Mahabali 
against  granting   the  request.  But  the  emperor  granted 
the  request  and  asked   Vamana  to  measure  the  ground. 
Vamana  immediately  enlarged  his   body  and  measured 
the  heaven,  the  earth  and  the  Patala  ( the  upper  realm 
the  earth  and  the    lower  realm )  in  two  steps  and  asked 
for  place   for    the  third    step.    The    honest  Mahabali 
showed  his    head   and  requested   to  complete  the  three 
steps.  Vamana  put  his  step  on  the  head  of  Mahabali  and 
pushed  him   down  to  Patala.  Thus   the  gods  regained 
their  lost  places.    (Bhagavata,  Skandha  8,  Chapter  19). 
A  description    that  by  the  toe  of  Vamanas'  raised  foot 
(raised  for    measuring    the  third  step)    the    testicle  of 
Brahma  was  cut  open  where  from  the  Ganges  originated, 
is  seen  in  the  Bhagavata,  Skandha  5. 
When  ViSvamitra  took  Rama    and  Laksmana   to   the 
forest  they   entered  a  holy  hermitage  and  ViSvamitra 
told  the  boys    that  it  was  the   hermitage   where  Aditi 
long  ago  had  observed  dvadaslfast.  It  was  in  that  same 
place  that  Vamana  incarnated  and    placed  his  step  on 
the  head  of  Mahabali. 

"The  bright  Madhava  took  birth  in  Aditi  as  Vamana 
and  went  to  Mahabali,  requested  for  three  feet  of  ground 
and  brought  under  control  the  three  worlds  for  the  good 
of  all.  By  binding  Bali  by  might,  he  gave  to  Indra  the 
three  worlds  and  this  hermitage  is  the  place  where  He 
once  placed  his  steps.  I  am  a  devotee  of  that  Vamana." 
(Valmlki  Ramayana,  Bala  Kanda,  Sarga  29) . 
.  6)  ParaSurdmdvatdra.  (Incarnation  as  Parasurama) .  Once 
Karttavlryarjuna  pleased  the  hermit-sage  Dattatreya 

the  son  of  Atri,  by  doing  penance  and  got  the  boon  of 
one  thousand  hands.  One  day  he  went  to  the  forest  for 
hunting  and  entered  the  bank  of  Narmada.  The  hermit 
Jamadagni  had  been  living  there  with  his  wife  Renuka 
and  sons  ParaSurama  and  others.  The  King  being  tired 
of  hunting  got  into  the  hermitage.  Parasurama  was  not 
there.  The  hermit  called  his  divine  cow  Kamadhenu, 
which  provided  the  King  and  his  followers  with  a  very 
good  supper. 

When  the  King  departed  he  asked  for  the  wonderful 
cow.  The  hermit  did  not  consent.  The  King  caught 
hold  of  the  cow  by  force  and  went  to  his  city.  ParaSu- 
rama  went  to  Mahismatinagar  the  capital  of  Kartta- 
vlryarjuna, killed  the  King  and  took  Kamadhenu  back. 
From  that  day  onwards  the  sons  of  Karttavirya  were 
waiting  for  an  opportunity  to  take  revenge. 
Once  Renuka  went  to  the  river  to  bring  water.  A  gan- 
dharva  (semi  god)  named  Citraratha  was  bathing  in 
the  river.  She  happened  to  look  at  him  fora  little  while. 
When  she  returned  the  hermit  was  very  angry  and  asked 
each  of  his  sons  to  cut  off  the  head  of  their  mother.  They 
all  refused.  But  ParaSurama  immediately  obeyed  his 
father  and  cut  off  her  head.  His  father  was  pleased  and 
said  that  he  might  ask  any  boon.  He  requested  his  father 
to  bring  his  mother  back  to  life.  Accordingly  Renuka 
was  brought  back  to  life. 

Once  the  sons  of  Karttavirya  got  into  the  hermitage, 
at  a  time  when  Parasurama  was  away  and  cut  off  the 
head  of  the  hermit  Jamadagni  and  took  it  off.  When  he 
returned  his  mother  told  him  how  his  father  was  killed. 
She  cried  and  beat  her  breast  twentyone  times.  ParaSu- 
rama  became  an  incarnation  of  revenge,  and  travelled 
over  the  world  twentyone  times  and  killed  every  Ksat- 
riyaKing.  The  blood  of  all  those  Kings  flowed  into  one 
channel  and  gathered  in  a  holy  Bath  called  Syamanta- 
pancakam.  Thus  Mahavisnu  took  his  sixth  incarna- 
tion as  Parasurama  and  fulfilled  his  duty  of  destroying 
the  wicked  Ksatriya  Kings  (For  details  about  Parasu- 
rama see  under  ParaSurama  and  Karttavlryarjuna). 
(Bhagavata,  Skandha 9,  Chapter  16). 

7)  Sri  Rdmdvatdra.     Mahavisnu  took    the  incarnation  of 
Sri  Rama  to  kill  Ravana.     (For  further  information  see 
the  words  Sri  Rama  and  Ravana) . 

8)  Balabhadrardmdvatdra.       (The    incarnation    of    Bala- 
bhadrarama)  (See  the  word  Balabhadrarama). 

9)  Sri  Krsndvatdra.      (The  incarnation  of  Sri  Krsna)  (See 
the  word  Krsna). 

10)  Kalkyavatdra  (The  incarnation  as  Kalki).     At  the  end 
of  Kaliyuga    (the  Age   of  Kali)    all  the    people  would 
become  atheists  and  sceptics.    Rewards  will  be  received 
from  the   depraved.  The    classes  will  be  mixed.  People 
would  become    degenerate  having  no  good  qualities.  A 
religion  called  'Vajasaneyam'  with  its  fifteen  doctrines 
only  will  be  acceptable.  People  would  become  irrespon- 
sible wearing    the  garment    of  duty.    Lawless    people 
would  take    the  form  of  Kings   and    will  begin    to  eat 
men.  In  those  days  Lord  Visnu  will  incarnate  as  Kalki, 
the  son  ofVisnuyasas  and  the  priest  of  Yajnavalkya  and 
learn  the  arts  of  wielding  weapon  and  handling  missiles 
and    destroy    all   lawless    ones.    The    subjects   will  be 
brought  back  to  the  four  classes  and  the  four    agramas 
or  stages  of  life  and  the  doctrines  and  directions  of  the 
long-established    religion  and    peace  and  order  will  be 



restored.  Then  the  Lord  will  cast  away  the  form  of 
Kalki  and  go  to  heaven.  After  that,  as  of  old,  Krtayuga 
(the  first  age)  will  begin  class  distinctions  and  the  four 
stages  of  life  and  such  other  establishments  will  once 
more  prevail.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  16). 

3)  The  Incarnations  of  Mahdvifnu. 

It  is  mentioned  in  Sri  MahadevI  Bhagavata,  Skandha  1, 
Chapter  3  that  Mahavisnu  had  taken  the  twentysix 
incarnations  given  below  : 

1)  Sanaka  2)  Sananda  3)  Sanatana  4)  Sanatkumara 
5)  Varaha  (pig)  6)  Narada  7)  Nara  Narayanas  8) 
Kapila  9)  Dattatreya  10)  Yajna  11)  Rsabha  12)  Prthu 
13)  Matsya  (fish)  14)  Mohini  15)'Kurma  (turtle) 
16)  Garuda  (eagle)  17)  Dhanvantari  18)  Narasimha 
(Lion-man)  19)  Vaniana  (dwarf)  20)  Parasurama 
21)  Vyasa  22)  Sri  Rama  23)  Balabhadrarama  24) 
Sri  Krsna  25)  Buddha  26)  Kalki.  (Information  about 
Matsya,  Kurma,  Varaha,  Narasirhha,  Vamana  and 
Parasurama,  are  given  under  the  word  Avatara  and 
for  the  rest  see  the  same  words) . 

In  the  first  Skandha  of  "Bhagavata  Kilippattu"  the 
incarnations  are  exhaustively  dealt  with  as  follows  : 
''And  after  that  to  make  it  possible  for  the  Lord  with 
four  faces  to  rule  his  subjects  justly  and  well.  He  took 
various  incarnations  with  his  portions,  the  first  four  of 
which  are  four  persons,  Sanaka,  Sananda,  Sanatana  and 
Sanatkumara,  in  the  order  given,  four  or  five-year  old 
children,  well-versed  in  the  fourVedas,  the  four  always 
inseparable  wandered  everywhere  come  to  the  world 
to  show  the  merits  of  Brahmacarya  (the  vow  of  celi- 
bacy) .  To  kill  Hiranyaksa  and  to  lift  up  the  earth  He 
took  the  form  of  Sukara  ( Pig) .  To  show  the  world  the 
tattva  (essence)  of  Sat  (good)  and  tama  (darkness) 
He  took  the  form  of  hermit  Narada.  To  show  the  merits 
of  penance  He  became  Nara  and  Narayana.  To  impart 
to  the  world  the  meaning  of  Sarhkhya  Yoga  (Indian 
Philosophy  dealing  with  evolution  and  union  with  the 
Supreme  Spirit)  He  came  as  Kapila  the  learned.  To 
teach  the  world  the  laws  of  chastisement  He  was 
born  as  Datta  of  the  wife  of  Atri.  Then  He  came  as 
Yajna  to  become  Indra.  The  next  incarnation  He  took 
was  Rsabha,  the  noble  King.  To  shorten  and  flatten 
the  earth  He  came  as  Prthu.  To  recover  the  Vedas  he 
took  the  form  of  Matsya  ( fish) .  To  remove  wrinkles  and 
grey  hair  the  gods  had  churned  the  sea  of  Milk  and 
then  to  lift  the  mount  Mandara  He  went  under  it  and 
as  a  bird  He  got  up  on  it.  To  give  the  world  Ayurveda 
( the  scripture  of  medicine )  He  came  as  Dhanvantari. 
To  entice  Asuras  and  to  recover  Ambrosia  from  them 
He  took  the  form  of  Mohini.  To  save  the  devoted 
Prahlada  and  to  slay  his  father  He  came  in  the  form  of 
Narasirhha.  Then  as  Vamana  the  younger  brother  of 
Indra  to  d.-ceive  Mahabali  and  to  recover  the  lost  worlds 
for  the  gods  he  came.  To  destroy  the  Kings  who  were 
haters  of  Brahmins  He  came  as  the  son  of  Jama- 
dagni.  Then  he  took  the  incarnation  of  Veda  Vyasa. 
And  to  slay  the  giant  Ravana  He  became  Sri  Rama. 
Next  we  see  Him  as  Balabhadrarama.  Then  He  came 
as  Devaklsuta  [son  of  DevakI  (Kfsna)].  Next  He  came 
in  the  Kaliyuga  as  Sri  Buddha  and  at  the  end  of  Kali- 
yuga  He  will  come  as  Kalki.  And  there  are  many  in- 
carnations still  to  speak  of." 

AVlCI.     One   of  the    twentyeight     hells.    The  following 
are  the  twentyeight  hells  : 

(1)  Raurava  (2)  Sukara  (3)  Rodha  (4)  Tala  (5)  Visa- 
sana  (6)  Mahajvala  (7)  Taptakumbha  (8)  Lavana 
(9)  Vilohita  (10)  Rudhirambhas  (11)  Vaitarani 
(12)  Krmlsa  (13)  Krtnibhojana  (14)  Asipatravana 
(15)  Krsna  (16)  Lalabhaksa  (17)  Daruna  (18)  Puya- 
vaha  (19)  Papa  (20)  Vahnijvala  (21)  Adhass"iras 
(22)  Sandamsa  (23)  Kalasutra  (24)  Tamas  (25)  Avici 
(26)  Svabhojana  (27)  Apratistha  (28)  Apraci.  (Visnu 
Purana,  ArriSa  2,  Chapter  6). 

The  hell  called  Avici  is  described  thus  :  "This  is  the 
hell  meant  for  those  who  stand  false  witness,  who  take 
false  oath  and  false  name.  The  soldiers  of  Yama  will 
push  these  false  people  into  the  hell  of  Avici,  from  the 
top  of  a  mount  which  is  a  hundred  yojanas  (league)  high. 
The  place  of  Avici,  like  the  waves  of  the  ocean,  is  swell- 
ing and  falling  and  swaying  and  surging  always.  When 
sinners  fall  there  their  bodies  will  be  crumbled  to  pieces. 
Their  life  will  enter  into  new  bodies  and  then  the  punish- 
ment will  be  repeated  again  and  again."  (Devi  Bhaga- 
vata, Skandha  8). 

AVIJNATAGATI.  Two  sons  were  born  to  Anila,  a  vasu 
by  his  wife  Siva.  They  were  called  Avijnatagati  and 
Manojava.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  66,  Stanza  25 ) . 

AVIKAMPANA.  This  ancient  King  got  from  the  her- 
mit Jyestha  Satvatadharma  (righteousness).  (M.B., 
Santi  Parva,  Chapter  384,  Stanza  47). 

AVIKSIT  I.  A  famous  King.  The  son  of  Karandhama 
and  father  of  Marutta.  He  was  honoured  even  by 
Brhaspati,  having  performed  a  hundred  horse  sacrifices. 
Mention  is  made  in  the  Markandeya  Purana  that  Aviksit 
had  seven  wives  :  Vara,  Gaurl,  Subhadra,  Lilavatl, 
Vibha,  MangavatI,  and  Kumudvatl.  Besides  them  Vai- 
s'a.linl  the  princess  of  ViSala  also  was  his  wife.  He  had 
taken  this  Vaisalini  from  her  Svayamvara  dais  (the 
bride  herself  selecting  a  husband  from  those  who  are 
present),  defeating  the  Kings  who  were  present 
there.  Those  defeated  Kings,  later,  joined  together  and 
defeated  Aviksit  and  took  him  a  prisoner.  Finally  Kara- 
ndhama rescued  him.  His  greatness  is  described  as 
follows : 

"The  righteous  man  Aviksit  is  equal  to  India  in  pro- 
wess. This  austere  and  righteous  man  has  become  a 
great  sacrificer.  In  brightness  he  is  equal  to  the 
Sun,  as  forgiving  as  the  earth,  in  intelligence  equal 
to  Brhaspati  and  as  firm  as  the  Himalayas.  By  his 
thought,  word,  and  deed  and  self  control  and  noble 
actions  he  kept  his  subjects  in  peace  and  prosperity." 
(Bhasa  Bharata,  Asvamedha  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Stanzas 

AVIKSIT  II.  Five  sons  were  born  to  King  Kuru  by  his 
wife  Vahinl.  Aviksit  was  one  of  thtm.  [See  the  word 
Vamsavall  (Genealogy)]. 

AVIMUKTA  (M) .  The  middle  part  of  the  city  of  Kasl. 
There  is  a  holy  temple  here.  It  is  said  that  those  who 
commit  suicide  in  this  temple  would  attain  heaven. 
(Vana  Parva,  Chapter  64,  Stanzas  78  and  79).  For 
more  information  see  the  word  Divodasa. 

AVINDHYA.  A  giant  in  whom  Ravana  had  confidence. 
But  he  held  the  opinion  that  Slta  should  be  returned 
to  Rama. 

"The  aged  giant  and  noble  leader  Avindhya,  who  had 
earned  the  confidence  of  Ravana,  brave,  learned  and  of 
good  qualities,  pleaded  with  Ravana  and  said  that 
Rama  would  exterminate  the  entire  race  of  the  giants, 




but   the    wicked   Ravana    would    not   pay   heed  to  his 

(Sri  ValmTki  Ramayana,  Sundara  Kanda,  Sarga  37, 
Stanzas  12  and  13).  This  aged  giant  had  sent  Trijata 
to  the  Asoka  park  to  console  Sita.  Hear  what  she  says: 
"The  famous  giant  leader,  the  noble  aged  well-wisher 
of  Rama,  Avindhya,  had  told  me  about  you." 
"  (M.B.,  Aranya  Parva,  Stanza  56).  There  is  a  situa- 
tion in  Vana  Parva  when  this  noble  giant  prevented 
Ravana  from  his  attempt  to  kill  Sita. 
"When  he  saw  the  decision  of  Ravana  to  kill  Sita, 
Avandhya  pacified  Ravana"  and  said,  "you,  a  great  King 
of  a  great  kingdom  should  not  deteriorate  to  the  level 
of  killing  a  woman.  A  woman  who  is  in  prison  and  at 
your  disposal  is  as  good  as  dead.  But  in  my  opinion,  even 
if  you  cut  her  body  into  pieces  she  would  not  die  and 
if  she  must  die  you  will  have  to  kill  her  husband." 
(M.B.,  Aranya  Parva,  Chapter  289,  Stanzas  28  to  30) . 
From  this  statement  the  wonderful  intelligence  of 
Avindhya  could  be  understood.  It  is  seen  in  stanzas  6 
and  7  of  Chapter  291  of  M.B.,  Vana  Parva  that  it  was 
Avindhya  who  had  taken  Sita  before  Sri  Rama  when 
he  had  captured  Lanka. 

AVIRATHA.     A  hermit  of  the  family  of  Kardama. 

Genealogy.     Brahma-Kardama-Kapila  -Grtsapati  -  Brah- 

AVIVAHITA.  (Spinster).  In  the  Mahabharata  a 
statement  regarding  spinsters  and  widows  is  seen. 
"Place  meat  on  the  ground  and  many  birds  will  come 
to  it.  So  also  men  will  gather  round  the  woman  who 
is  having  no  husband."  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  158, 
Stanza  12). 

AVYAYA.  A  serpent  of  the  Dhrtarastra  family.  This 
serpent  fell  in  the  sacrificial  fire  meant  for  serpents, 
prepared  by  Janamejaya.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter 
57,  Stanza  16). 

AYASSA&KU.  A  great  Asura.  He  was  born  as  a  Prince 
of  the  Kekaya  kingdom.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  67, 
Verse  10). 

AYASSlRAS.  A  son  of  Kasyapa  by  his  wife,  Danu. 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  65,  Verse 23) .  He  was  born 
a  prince  of  Kekaya.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  67, 
Verse  10). 

AYATAYAMA(S).     See  Guruparampara. 

AY  ATI.  Son  of  King  Nahusa  and  brother  of  Yayati. 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  75,  Verse  30) . 

AYAVAHA(M).  A  place  in  ancient  India.  (M.B., 
Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  5) . 

AYOBAHU  (AYOBHUJA).  A  son  of  Dhrtarastra.  (M.B.: 
Adi  Parva,  Chapter  67,  Verse  98) .  Bhlmasena  killed 
him  at  Kuruksetra.  (MB.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  157, 
Verse  19). 

AYODHADHAUMYA  (Ayodhadhaumya).  Apoda- 
dhaumya,  Apodadhaumya,  Dhaumya.  A  great  Muni 
(sage).  He  had  three  disciples,  Aruni,  Upamanyu  and 

1)  Disciple  Aruni.  He  belonged  to  Pancala,  and  once  his 
guru  deputed  him  to  construct  embankments  in  the 
field.  But,  his  attempts  to  construct  embankments 
did  not  succeed.  Finally  he  lay  himself  in  the  field 
where  the  embankment  was  required,  and  then  the 
flow  of  water  stopped.  The  guru  enquired  about  Aruni, 
who  was  thus  lying  in  the  field.  Then  only  he  knew 
the  reason  for  Aruni's  absence.  The  guru  went  to  the 
field  and  called  Aruni.  Then  the  embankment  burst 

open  and  Aruni  came  out,  and  because  of  that  Aruni 
got  the  name  Uddalaka.  (M.B.,  Chapter  3,  Verses 

2)  Disciple  Upamanyu.  Once  Dhaumya  (the  guru)  asked 
his  second  disciple  Upamanyu  to  tend  the  cows.  He 
used  to  take  care  of  the  animals  grazing  in  the  woods 
during  daytime  and  return  home  at  dusk  and  prostrate 
before  the  guru.  Looking  at  the  plump  and  healthy 
body  of  Upamanyu  the  guru  asked  him  how  he  was 
feeding  himself.  His  reply  was  that  he  was  begging 
alms  and  feeding  himself  with  what  he  got  thus.  Then 
the  guru  asked  him  to  hand  over  to  him  (guru)  all 
alms  got  in  future.  After  that  he  used  to  give  everything 
he  got  byway  of  alms  to  the  guru.  And,  he  continued 
returning  to  the  Gurukula  at  dusk  and  prostrating  be- 
fore the  guru.  Finding  Upamanyu  even  then  as  plump 
and  healthy  as  he  was  formerly,  the  guru  said  :  My 
son  Upamanyu,  you  hand  over  to  me  all  the  alms  you 
get,  and  yet  your  body  looks  as  trim  as  of  old.  How 
happens  it  so  ?"  Upamanyu  replied  :  "After  giving  the 
alms  I  get  first  to  you,  my  guru,  I  do  again  beg  for 
alms  and  feed  myself".  To  this  the  guru  reacted  thus: 
My  boy,  what  you  do  is  not  the  proper  thing.  By  the 
second  course  of  alms-taking  you  stand  in  the  way  of 
other  people  getting  their  food.  It  is  gross  injustice  to 
do  so." 

Upamanyu,  from  that  day  onwards  strictly  followed 
his  guru's  instruction,  and  continued  returning  at  dusk 
to  the  guru  and  doing  obeisance  to  him. 
Even  then  finding  Upamanyu  to  be  quite  plump  and 
healthy  the  guru  told  him  :  "Well,  now  you  hand  over 
to  me  all  the  alms  you  get,  and  you  do  not  take  alms 
a  second  time  the  same  day.  Yet  you  are  quite  fit  and 
fat.  How  is  it  so  ?" 

To  this  Upamanyu's  reply  was  that  he  was  feeding  him- 
self on  the  milk  of  the  cows  he  tended.  The  guru  told 
him  that  this  too  was  not  just  and  proper  on  his  part. 
The  guru  had  not  permitted  him  to  drink  milk  thus. 
Upamanyu  agreed  to  obey  his  orders.  And,  as  usual  he 
continued  tending  the  cows  and  returning  at  dusk.  Even 
then  he  maintained  the  same  plump  and  healthy  phy- 
sique. And  the  Guru  told  him  as  follows  :  "You  do  not 
eat  the  food  you  get  at  the  first  alms- taking,  you  do  not 
go  in  for  alms  a  second  time  the  same  day,  nor  do  you 
drink  milk.  Yet,  how  is  it  that  you  maintain  the  same 
fat  and  healthy  physique  as  in  former  days  ?" 
Upamanyu's  reply  was  that  he  was  feeding  now-a-days 
on  the  foam  of  milk  bristling  at  the  mouth  of  the 
calves  when  they  had  fed  on  their  mother's  milk.  And, 
the  guru  said  :  "if  that  is  so  the  calves  will  be,  out  of 
kindness  and  sympathy  for  you,  releasing  much  foam 
of  milk  out  of  their  mouths.  That  will  affect  them.  So, 
do  not  repeat  the  process.  Since  the  guru  forbade  him 
to  have  food  in  any  manner  as  detailed  above,  Upa- 
manyu, while  tending  the  herd  of  cows  in  the  forest,  ate 
the  bitter  and  poisonous  leaves  of  a  tree  one  day  to 
satisfy  his  burning  hunger.  The  leaf  was  bitter  in  taste 
and  injurious  in  its  properties.  Therefore,  this  new  way 
of  satisfying  hunger  affected  the  health  of  the  eyes  of 
Upamanyu  and  he  became  blind.  Moving  about  in  this 
condition  he  fell  into  a  neglected  well  in  the  woods. 
When,  even  after  the  sun  had  set,  Upamanyu  did  not, 
as  usual,  return,  the  guru  enquired  about  him  from 
other  disciples.  Naturally,  they  told  the  guru  that 
Upamanyu  was  out  in  the  forest  with  the  cows.  As  the 




guru  felt  that  Upamanyu  was  staying  away  late  in  the 
forest  since  he  had  been  prevented  from  doing  every- 
thing he  (guru)  went  to  the  forest  accompanied  by 
other  disciples  and  called  out  for  Upamanyu,  and 
Upamanyu  responded  from  deep  down  the  well.  He 
also  told  the  guru  how  he  happened  to  fall  into  the  well. 
After  telling  him  that  if  only  he  would  pray  to  the 
Asvinldevas  they  will  cure  his  blindness  the  guru  return- 
ed to  the  Asrama  with  other  disciples.  Upamanyu, 
accordingly  offered  praises  and  prayed  to  the  Asvinl- 
devas, who  were  so  pleased  with  him  that  they  appeared 
before  him  and  gave  him  a  bread.  Upamanyu  refused 
to  eat  the  bread  without  giving  it  to  the  guru.  Then 
the  Asvinldevas  told  him  thus:  "In  the  past  when  we 
gave  your  guru  a  bread  like  this  he  ate  the  same  with- 
out giving  it  to  his  guru.  You  may  just  imitate  him 
and  eat  the  bread  yourself".  Even  then  Upamanyu  did 
not  eat  the  bread.  The  Asvinldevas  were  so  much 
pleased  at  this  that  they  blessed  Upamanyu  thus  :  "The 
teeth  of  your  guru  will  turn  into  hard  iron  and  yours 
into  pure  gold.  Your  blindness  will  be  cured  and  all 
happiness  and  prosperity  will  be  yours." 
The  blessings  of  the  Asvinldevas  took  full  effect,  and 
Upamanyu  hurried  to  his  guru  and  prostrated  at  his 
feet.  Dhaumya  and  the  other  disciples  of  his  congratu- 
lated Upamanyu.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  3,  Verses 

3)  Disciple,  Veda.  Ayodhadhaumya  one  day  said  to 
Veda,  his  third  disciple:  "You  stay  with  me  for  some- 
time serving  me.  That  will  bring  you  all  prosperity  in 
life."  Veda  agreed,  and  stayed  for  a  long  time  in  the 
AsVama  in  the  service  of  the  guru.  Without  even  the 
slightest  murmur  he  put  up  with  every  discomfort  and 
hardship,  be  it  acute  hunger  and  thirst  or  extreme 
cold  or  heat,  and  gladly  performed  all  the  work  and 
duties  the  master  imposed  on  him.  The  guru  was  ab- 
solutely pleased  and  his  blessings  resulted  in  all  pros- 
perity and  omnipotence  for  the  disciple.  (M.B.,  Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  3,  Verses  78-80) . 

AYODHYA.  A  city  in  North  India  which  enjoyed  great 
importance  and  reputation  for  many  years  as  the  capi- 
tal of  the  Kings  of  the  solar  dynasty.  ( See  Iksvaku 
dynasty).  All  the  Kings  of  this  dynasty  ruled  the  coun- 
try from  this  city  as  their  capital.  Vasistha,  the  great 
preceptor  of  the  Iksvaku  Rajas,  came  to  Ayodhya  dur- 
ing the  period  of  the  reign  of  Kalmasapada,  who  was 
the  thirtyfifth  ruler  in  succession  to  Iksvaku.  A  quarrel 
broke  out  between  Kalmasapada  and  Vasistha  during 
a  hunting  expedition,  and  Vasistha  cursed  the  King 
and  as  the  result  the  latter  became  a  Raksasa.  After 
regaining  his  former  form  as  King,  he  apologised  to 
Vasistha  and  they  became  friends  again.  At  the  requ- 
est of  the  King  in  the  interests  of  his  dynasty  Vasistha 
came  to  Ayodhya,  and  the  people  were  greatly  elated. 
A  son  was  born  to  Vasistha  by  Kalmasapada's  wife  and 
that  son  was  Asmaka.  After  that  Vasistha  used  to  go  to 
Ayodhya  frequently  and  was  installed  as  family  precep- 
tor of  the  Iksvakus.  Till  the  time  of  Sri  Rama  the  city 
of  Ayodhya  maintained  its  pomp  and  glory,  and  after 
that  gradually  its  decay  and  fall  set  in.  Laudatory  refe- 
rences to  the  city  are  found  in  most  of  the  Puranas 
like  the  Mahabharata,  Brahmanda  Purana  etc.  (See 

AYOMUKHl.     A  Raksasa  woman.  She  met    Sri  Rama 
and  Laksmana  on   their    way    to    Matamgasrama    in 

search  of  Slta,  and  requested  Laksmana  to  marry  her. 
Laksmana,  as  in  the  case  of  Surpanakha  cut  off  her 
nose  and  breasts  and  drove  her  away.  (Valmlki  Rama- 
yana,  Aranya  Kanda,  Chapter  69). 

AYUTANAYI.  A  king  of  the  1'uru  Vamsa;  he  was  the 
son  of  Maharaja  Bhauma.  Suyajna,  Kama  and  Akro- 
dha  were  the  names  respectively  of  his  mother,  wife 
and  son.  He  came  to  be  known  as  Ayutanfiyi  because 
of  his  having  performed  10,000  Purusamcdhas.  (M.B., 
Adi  Parva,  Chapter  95,  Verses  19-20) 

AYUTAYU.  A  king  who  ruled  his  state  for  1000  years. 
The  Puranas  like  Bhagavata,  the  Matsya  and  the  Vayu 
refer  to  him  as  the  son  of  Srutasravas. 

AYUTAYUS.  Father  of  King  Rtuparna.  (Bhagavata, 
Navama  Skandha) .  For  genealogy  see  Iksvaku  dynasty. 

A.  (sfj)  This  word  means  Brahma  and  also  anadara- 
vakya  (a  word  showing  disrespect).  In  the  indeclinable 
form  it  means  limit,  anger  and  pain. 


A  few  details:  1)  A  low-caste  people.  People  living  in 
the  estuary  of  the  rivers  of  Sindhu  and  Sarasvati  were 
generally  called  Abhiras.  In  the  Sabha  Parva  of  Maha- 
bharata we  find  Nakula  defeating  these  people  during 
his  victory  march  after  the  great  Mahabharata  battle. 

2)  Once   Abhiras    went    to   Dharmaputra   with  many 
gifts.  (Slokas  11-13.  Chapter  51,  Sabha  Parva,    M.B.). 

3)  Once  it  was  prophesied    by   Markandeya  Rsi,   that 
low-caste  people  like  Abhiras  and  Sakas  would  become 
rulers  of  states  in    different  parts   of  Bharata    during 
Kaliyuga.    (Slokas   35-36,    Chapter  188,   Vana  Parva, 

4)  In    the   Garudavyiiha  (Battle    array    named  after 
Garuda)  which  Drona  created  during    the   Kuruksetra 
battle  he  included  Abhiras  also.    (Sloka  6,    Chapter  20, 
Drona  Parva,  M.B.). 

5)  Because  of  the  hatred  of  Siidras  and  Abhiras  a  sac- 
red lake  named  Vinasana  disappeared  from    the  river, 
Sarasvati.  (Slokas  1  and   2,  Chapter  37,  Salya  Parva, 

6)  Abhiras  were  Ksatriyas  formerly.  Afraid  of  Parasu- 
rama  they  fled  and  lived  in  mountain-caves  not    conti- 
nuing their  hereditary  work  and    thus  became  Sudras. 
(Sloka  16,  Chapter  29,  Asvamedhika    Parva,  M.B.) . 

7)  When  Dvaraka  was  destroyed  by  floods  and  all  the 
Yadavas  were  killed  Arjuna  went  north  taking  along  with 
him  the  wives  of  Sri  Krsna.  At  that  time  Abhiras  were 
among    those    who    attacked    and    carried     away    the 
women.    (Slokas  47-63,  Chapter    7,   Mausalya    Parva, 


ACAMANA.  First  drink  water  three  times  accompanied 
by  incantations  and  then  with  water  wipe  your  face 
twice  and  your  eyes,  ears,  nose,  shoulders,  breast  and 
head  once.  This  act  is  called  Acamana. 

"Triracamedapah  purvarii 

Dvih  pramrjyattato  mukharh 

Khani  caiva  spi'sedadbhir 

Atmanam  sira  eva  ca" 

(Manusmrti,  Sloka  60,  Chapter  2). 
Devi  Bhagavata  in  its  eleventh  Skandha  says  about 
Acamana  like  this :  "Drinking  water  by  your  right  hand 
is  called  acamana.  Curve  your  palm  into  the  shape  of 
a  spoon,  hold  water  in  it  and  drink.  There  must  be 
enough  water  in  the  palm  to  cover  a  green-gram  seed, 
not  less  nor  more.  If  it  falls  short  or  exceeds  the  mea- 
sure it  is  considered  to  be  like  drinking  alcohol.  While 




shaping   your   palm    neither  your  little  finger  nor  your 
thumb  should  touch  the  other  fingers.  At    the    time   of 
acamana  you  should  support  your  right  hand  by  your 
lelt  hand.  Otherwise  the  water  will  turn  impure." 
ACARAMARYADAS.     Sec  under  Pujavidhi. 
ADAMBARA.     One  of  the  five  Parsadas  whom   Brahma 
gave    to   Skandadeva.  Brahma    gave  Kunda,  Kusuma, 
Kumuda,  Damba  and  Adambara. 

ADI.  A  mighty  son  of  the  demon,  Andhakiisura.  He  did 
penance  to  please  Brahma  and  obtained  from  him  a 
boon  to  seek  vengeance  on  Siva  who  had  murdered  his 
father.  The  boon  was  that  Adi  would  die  only  when  he 
left  his  present  form  and  took  another  form.  After 
obtaining  the  boon  Adi  went  to  Kailasa  and  outwitting 
the  sentries  entered  the  abode  of  Siva  in  the  shape  of  a 
serpent.  After  that  he  disguised  himself  as  ParvatI  and 
went  near  Siva.  But  Siva  knew  the  trick  and  killed  him. 
( Srsti  Khanda  of  Padma  Purana) . 

AplBAKA.  A  combat  without  serving  any  useful  pur- 
pose and  conducted  out  of  sheer  spite  between  two 
people  to  the  surprise  of  others.  The  fight  between 
Vasisfha  and  Visvamitra  was  of  this  kind.  (Skandha  6 
of  Devi  Bhagavata). 

ADIGADADHARA.     It  was   with  the  bones  of  an  asura 

(demon)    named  Gada  that  Mahavisnu  made  the  first 

gada  (mace) .  By  that  mace  Visnu  killed  Heti  and  other 

asuras  of  that  lot  and  got  the  name   Adigadadhara   (He 

who  first  handled  the  mace).   (See  under  Gada). 

ADIKtJRMA.     The  mountain  of  Mandara  which   was 

used   as  a  churn-stick  to  churn  the  great  milky  ocean, 

Kslrabdhi    went    down   the    ocean.    Then  Mahavisnu 

took  the  shape  of  a  tortoise  to  lift  it  up  and  this  first 

tortoise  was  called  Adikurma.  (Sloka  12,    Chapter   18, 

Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ADIPARVA.  One  of  the  parvans  of  the  epic  Mahabharata. 

It  is  the  first  parva.   (See  under  Bharata). 
ADIPARVATA.     The  place    of  abode    of   Siva   in    the 
Himalayas.  (Sloka  22,  Chapter  327,  Santi  Parva,  M.B.). 
ADIRAJA.     The   son  of  Kuru   who    was    a  king  of  the 

Puru  dynasty.    (See  under  Puru). 

ADlSlSlRA.  One  of  the  disciples  of  Sakalya.  Vyasa , 
made  the  Vedas  and  taught  his  son  Sakalya  a  portion 
of  it.  Sakalya  divided  his  portion  into  five  different 
and  equal  divisions  and  taught  each  of  his  five  disciples, 
Vatsyayana,  Maudgalya,  Sali,  AdisiSira  and  Gokhali  a 
division.  (Skandha  12,  Bhagavata). 

ADISTI.  The  disciple  who  was  ordained  by  his  precep- 
tor to  observe  celibacy  for  a  stipulated  number  of  years. 
ADITYA.  The  twelve  sons  born  to  the  sage  Kasyapa  of 
his  wife  Aditi  are  known  as  the  twelve  Adityas.  They 
are  the  following  :  Dhata,  Mitra,  Aryama,  Rudra, 
Varuna,  Surya,  Bhaga,  Vivasvan,  Pusa,  Savita,  Tvasta 
and  Visnu.  Besides  these  Aditi  had  twentyone  children 
including  Indra.  All  of  them  are  called  Adityas  mean- 
ing children  of  Aditi.  From  the  thirtythree  sons  of  Aditi 
were  born  the  thirtythree  crores  of  devatas.  Of  these 
the  eldest  is  Indra  and  the  youngest,  Vamana.  (Sloka 
36,  Chapter 66,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.).  (There  is  corrobora- 
tion  for  this  in  Sloka  14,  Sarga  14,  Aranya  Kanda, 
Valmlki  Ramayana) . 

Sirdar  K.M.  Panikar  in  his  preface  to  the  book  "Rgveda- 
samhita"  writes  thus  about  Adityas  :  ''Generally  we 
think  of  Surya  (the  Sun)  when  we  hear  the  word 
Aditya.  But  there  are  many  different  Adityas  in  Rg- 
veda,  chief  of  them  is  Varuna.  Though  Savita,  Pusa 

and  Mitra  are  all  synonyms  of  Surya  in  Rgveda  they 
are  all  separate  dcvas.  There  is  no  end  to  the  varieties 
of  Adityas  and  their  prominence  in  the  Vedas.  Sum- 
marising we  can  say  thus.  The  familiar  devas  like 
Indra,  Agni,  Varuna  and  Surya  are  not  found  in  the 
same  form  or  power  as  we  are  taught  to  believe.  Those 
whom  we  have  lowered  down  to  the  posts  of  the  eight 
sentries  of  the  universe  are  very  prominent  devatas  in 
the  Vedas.  Many  Adityas  have  merged  in  Surya  and 
winds  in  the  god  of  Vuyu.  Rudra  has  merged  in  Siva. 
Who  will  believe  that  the  all-powerful  Deva  of  the  Rg- 
veda and  the  vainglorious  Indra  who  lives  in  fear  of 
men  doing  penance  are  one  and  the  same  person  ?" 
ADITYAHRDAYA.  A  mantra  (incantation)  of  great 
power  to  destroy  all  enemies.  During  the  combat  with 
Ravana  at  one  time  Rama  fell  exhausted  in  the  battle- 
field. Seeing  this  the  sage  Agastya  rushed  to  him  and 
taught  him  this  mantra.  (Sarga  107,  Yuddha  Kanda, 
Valmlki  Ramayana). 

ADITYAKETU.  One  of  the  sons  of  Dhrtarastra.  Bhlma 
sena  killed  him  in  the  great  battle  of  Kuruksetra. 
(Sloka  102,  Chapter  67,  Adi  Parva  and  Sloka  28,  Chap- 
ter 88,  Bhlsma  Parva,  M.B.). 

ADITYASENA.  A  very  brave  King.  Stories  about  this 
King  are  found  in  Kathasaritsagara.  (Taraiiga  4,  Katha- 
pithalambaka) . 

ADITYATlRTHA.  An  ancient  holy  place  on  the  banks 
of  the  river,  Sarasvati.  (Sloka  17,  Chapter  99,  Salya 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

ADITYAVAR&A.  A  king  who  always  ordered  without 
thinking  and  repented  later.  The  book  Kathasaritsagara 
tells  the  story  of  this  King  in  the  fifth  taraiiga  of  its 
part,  Kathapithalambaka. 

ADYAKATHA.  A  sage  of  old.  He  attended  the  sacrifice 
conducted  by  the  King  Uparicara.  (Sloka  9,  Chapter 
336,  Santi  Parva,  M,B.). 

AGNEYAPURANA.  See  under  Agnipurana, 
AGNEYASTRA.  A  powerful  weapon  or  missile-  One 
night  Arjuna  fought  against  agandharva,  Arigaraparna, 
on  the  banks  of  the  river  Ganges.  Arjuna  then  described 
to  him  how  he  came  into  possession  of  this  missile.  This 
powerful  missile  was  given  first  to  Bharadvaja  by  Briias- 
pati  and  Bharadvaja  gave  it  to  Agnivesya  who  in  turn 
gave  it  to  Drona  and  the  latter  gave  it  to  Arjuna,  his 
most  favourite  disciple.  (Slokas  29-30,  Chapter  170,  Adi 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

AGNEYl.  Wife  of  Kuru,  son  of  Manu.  Sambhu  wife  of 
Dhruva  gave  birth  to  two  sons,  Sisti  and  Bhavya. 
Succhaya  wife  of  Sisti  gave  birth  to  five  sinless  sons 
Ripu,  Ripumjaya,  Vipra,  Vi'kala  and  Vrkatejas.  Cak- 
susawas  born  of  Brhati,  wife  of  Ripu.  Manu  was  born 
to  Caksusa  of  his  wife  Puskarim,  daughter  of  the  great 
Viranaprajapati.  Puskarim  hailed  from  the  dynasty  of 
Marutta.  To  Manu  were  born  of  Nadvala  ten  sons, 
Kuru,  Puru,  Satadyumna,  Tapasvi,  Satyavan,  Suci, 
Agnistoma,  Atiratra,  Sudyumna,  and  Abhimanyu.  Of 
these,  Kuru  got  of  his  wife  Agneyl  six  sons:  Aiiga, 
Sumanas,  Khyati,  Kratu,  Angiras  and  Sibi.  Vena  was 
born  to  Anga  of  his  wife  Sunltha.  (Chapter  13,  AmSam 
1,  Visnu  Puiana). 
AGNlDHRA.  See  Agnidadhra. 

AGNIVESYA  (AGNI VESA) .  An  ancient  sage  who  received 
an  armour  and  the  sacred  mantras  associated  with  it 
from  Brhaspati.  He  was  the  Acarya  of  Dhanurveda  and 




the   revered   preceptor    of  Drona.    (Slokas  67  and   68, 
Chapter  94,  Drona  Parva,  M.B.) . 
AGRAYAI^A.     The   fourth    son    of   the    Agni,    Bhanu. 

(Sloka  13,  Chapter  221,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 
AGREYA.  A  country  conquered  by  Kama.     (Slokas  19- 

21,  Chapter  254,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 
AHAVANlYA.     An    agni.     (M.B.,   Adi  Parva,  Chapter 

74,  Verse  67). 

AHUKA.  A  king  of  Yadu  Vamsa.  He  was  the  father  of 
Ugrasena,  the  father  of  Kariisa.  (Some  Puranas  say 
that  Ahuka  and  Ugrasena  were  the  names  of  the  same 
person).  For  genealogy,  see  "YADU  VAMSA".  InM.B., 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  14,  Verse  33,  we  find  that 
Akrura  had  married  Sutanu,  the  daughter  of  Ahuka. 
Ahuka  had  a  hundred  sons.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter 
14,  Verse  56).  There  were  constant  quarrels  between 
Ahuka  and  Akrura.  (M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  81, 
Verses  8-11). 

AHUTI.  A  Ksatriya  King.  Sri  Krsna  defeated  this  King 
in  the  city  called  Jaruthi.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter 
12,  Verse  30). 

AjAGARA.     An  ascetic.  Sand  Parva  of  Mahabharata  in 
its  1 79th  Chapter  states  that  Prahlada    conversed  with 
this  sage. 
AJAGARA  PARVA.     A  sub-division  of  the  Vana  Parva 

of  Mahabharata.  (See  under  M.B.) . 
AJAGARAVRATA.  The  vrata  practised  by  the  sage, 
Ajagara.  (A  vrata  is  a  predetermined  course  of  action 
which  is  followed  with  continued  persistence).  In  his 
own  words  it  is  the  following  :  "If  I  get  a  grand  feast 
I  will  accept  it  but  I  will  go  without  food  for  days 
together  if  I  do  not  get  any  food  at  all.  People  used  to 
feed  me  well  sometimes,  sometimes  a  little  and  some- 
times not  at  all.  I  will  eat  vegetables  and  cakes  some- 
times. I  will  eat  meat  and  any  kind  of  food.  I  will  lie  on 
soft  bed  or  on  bare  earth  sometimes  and  in  big  houses 
if  I  get  the  chance.  I  will  wear  costly  clothes  if  I  get 
them  or  I  will  wear  dried  leaves  and  animal  skins.  If 
I  get  food  from  yagasalas  I  will  never  refuse  it,  but  I 
will  never  go  seeking  for  it."  (Slokas  19-25,  Chapter 
1 79, Santi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

AJAGAVA.  The  bow  of  Mandhata  and  Prthu  and  the 
Gandlva  of  Arjuna  bear  the  name  Ajagava.  (Slokas  33 
and  34,  Chapter  126,  Vana  Parva;  Sloka  94,  Chapter 
145,  Drona  Parva,  M.B.  and  Chapter  13,  ArhSam  1  of 
Visnu  Purana) . 

AjAMlDHA.     A  king  born  of  the  family  of  Ajamidha. 
AjANEYA.     A  species  of  good  horses.    (Sloka  10,    Chap- 
ter 270,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 

AjYAPA  (S) .     A    community  of  Pitrs   belonging   to  the 
dynasty  of   Pulaha.    They   are  called   so  because  they 
drink   during  yagas    the   ghee  made   out  of  goats  milk 
(Ajyam)     ( Ma tsya  Purana).  They   live    in  the  land  of 
Kardama  Prajapati.  Their  daughter  Viraja  is  the   wife 
of  Nahusa.    (Srsti  Khanda,  Padma  Purana). 
AKARSA.     People  living  in  the  land  named  Akarsa   are 
called  Akarsas.  (Sloka  11,  Chapter   34,  Sabha   Parva, 
AKASAJANANl.     Holes   made  on    the   walls  of  a  Fort. 

Bullets  are  sent  out  from  the  fort  through  these  holes. 
AKATHA.  Son  of  Maiikana.  He  was  a  great  devotee 
of  Siva  and  once  when  his  house  was  burnt  completely 
the  idol  of  Siva  inside  his  house  was  partially  destroyed. 
Worried  much  over  this  loss  Akatha  was  about  to  give 
a  portion  of  his  body  also  to  the  flames  when  Siva 

appeared  before  him  and  blessed  him.  (Patala  Khanda, 
Padma  Purana)  . 

AKROSA.  A  king  of  ancient  Bharata.  He  was  king  over 
the  land  ofMahottha.  Nakula  conquered  him  during 
his  victory  march.  (Slokas  5  and  6,  Chapter  32,  Sabha 
Parva,  M.B.). 

AKRTI.  A  king  of  ancient  Bharata.  This  king  ruled 
over  the  land  of  Saurastra.  (Sloka  61,  Chapter  31, 
Sabha  Parva,  M.B.) . 

AKRTIPUTRA.  Ruciparva,  son  of  Akrti.  He  fought  on 
the  side  of  the  Pandavas  and  was  killed  by  Bhagadatta. 
(Slokas  40  to  47,  Chapter  27,  Drona  Parva,  M.B.). 

AKUTI.  Wife  of  Ruciprajapati.  Brahma's  son  Svayam- 
bhuva  Manu  got  of  his  wife  Satarupa  two  sons  Priya- 
vrata  and  Uttanapada  and  two  daughters  Prasuti  and 
Akuti.  Prasuti  was  married  to  Daksaprajapati  and 
Akuti  to  Ruciprajapati.  Akuti  delivered  twins  named 
Yajna,  a  son,  and  Daksina,  a  daughter.  (Chapter  7, 
Varhsam  1,  Visnu  Purana). 

ALAJALA.    See  under  "YAMAJIHVA". 

ALAMBA.     An  ancient  sage.  He   nourished  in  Yudhis- 

thira's  court.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  5,  Verse  5  j. 

ALAMBAYANA.     A    comrade    of    Indra.    (M.B.,  Anu- 

Sasana  Parva,  Chapter  13,  Verse  15) . 
ALVAR.     See  the  word  NAMMALVAR. 
AMA.     See  under  AVATARA. 

AMARATHA.     A  place  in  ancient  Bharata.    (Sloka    54, 
_  Chapter  9,  Bhisma  Parva,  M.B.). 

ANA  I.  (A  Malayalam  word  meaning  elephant).  Bhaga- 
vata  relates  the  story  of  how  Indradyumna  became 
an  elephant  by  the  curse  of  Agastya.  (See  under  Indra- 
dyumna) . 

ANA  II.      (Elephant) .    Valmlki    Ramayana  narrates  the 
origin  of  elephants  thus;  "Kasyapa  was  born  to  Marlci, 
son  of  Brahma.  KaSyapa  married  the  daughters,    Aditi, 
Dili,   Danu,   Kalika,   Tamra,    Krodhavasa,  Manu  and 
Anala,  of  Daksaprajapati.  Of  these  Krodhavas"a  gave 
birth  to  ten  girls,  MrgI,  Mrgamada,  Harl,  Bhadramata, 
Matarigl,  Sardull,  Sveta,  Surabhi,  Surasa,  and  Kadru. 
Elephants  were  born  as  the  sons  of  Matarigl.  (Sarga  14, 
Aranya  Kanda,  Valmlki  Ramayana.) . 
There  is  a  story  in  the  Mahabharata  to  explain  why  the 
tongue  of  the  elephant  is  curved  inside.  "Bhrgu  Maharsi 
cursed  Agni    and  greatly   dejected    over    this  he   dis- 
appeared   from  public  and  hid    somewhere.  The  Devas 
started   searching   for  him  and  it  was  an   elephant  that 
showed  the  devas  the  hiding  place  of  Agni.  Agni  then 
cursed    the  elephants   and  said  that    thereafter   all   the 
elephants  would  have  their  tongues  curved  inside.  (Sloka 
36,  Chapter  85,  AnuSasana  Parva,  M.B.). 
The   signs   of  good  elephants  and  the  treatment  to  be 
accorded    to   sick    ones   are  detailed    in  Agni  Purana. 
"Elephants   with   long  trunks  and  heavy   breathing  be- 
long  to  the   top  class  and  they  will  possess   great  endu- 
rance power.  Those  who  have  nails  eighteen  or  twenty 
in    number   and    who  became  turbulent   during  winter 
belong    to    a   superior  class.     Those   ones    whose  right 
tusks  are  a  bit  raised,  whose  cry  is    stentorian  as  that  of 
thunder   whose   ears   are  very  big   and  whose  skins  are 
spotted  are  the  best  of  the  species.  Other  varieties  espe- 
cially the  dwarfish  type  and  she-elephants   in  the  early 
stage  of  pregnancy  are  not  good  and  not  fit  to  be  tamed. 
Elephants  who  have  Varna,  Sattva,  Bala,  Rupa,  Kanti, 
Sariraguna  and  Vega  will  conquer  enemies  in  a  battle; 
there  is  no  doubt  about  it.  Elephants  are  an   ornament 

ANA  ii 


ANA  ii 

for  any  battle-array.  The  victory  earned  by  a  King  with 
his  elephants  is  more  respected. 

For  all  diseases  of  an  elephant  Anuvasana  or  Sncha- 
vasti  is  recommended.  A  bath  after  anointing  it  with 
oil  or  ghee  is  good.  For  bkin  diseases  the  ghee  may  be 
combined  with  Manjal  ( Turmeric) ,  Maramanjal  or 
gomutra  (cow  urine).  If  it  suffers  from  enlargement 
of  the  belly,  giving  it  a  bath  with  sesame  oil  is  good. 
It  can  be  given  Pancalavanas  and  Varunlmadya  to 
drink.  If  there  is  fainting  it  must  be  given  rice  mixed 
with  Vlalari,  Triphala,  Cukku,  Mulaku  and  Tippali 
and  water  mixed  with  honey  to  drink.  If  there  is  head- 
ache anointing  the  head  with  sesame  oil  and  inhala- 
tion of  the  same  is  good. 

For  diseases  of  the  foot,  treatment  with  Snehaputas  is 
prescribed.  To  get  motion  of  the  bowels  Kalkan^a 
Kasaya  (infusion  of  sugar  candy) is  good.  To  those  who 
have  shivers  should  be  given  the  flesh  of  peacock, 
Tittiri  bird  and  Lava  bird  mixed  with  Tippali  and  pep- 
per. For  dysentery  the  tender  fruit  of  Kuvala,  skin  of 
Paccotti,  flower  of  Tatiri  should  be  dried  and  powder- 
ed and  be  given  mixed  with  sugar  along  with  rice.  For 
Karagraha  (pain  inside  the  trunk)  Nasy am  of  ghee  with 
Intappd  mixed  in  it  should  be  done.  It  must  be  given 
"Muttahga  Kanci  with  tippali,  Cukku  and  Jiraka  in 
it.  For  Utkarnaka  (pain  in  the  ear)  flesh  of  pigs  should 
be  given.  For  Galagraha  (pain  in  the  neck)  a  liniment 
made  of  Dasamula,  Mutirappuli  and  Kakkappancci  in 
oil  should  be  rubbed  at  the  site  of  pain  and  the  elephant 
kept  under  chains.  If  there  is  difficulty  in  passing  urine 
light  liquor  containing  powdered  Astalavanas  should 
be  given.  For  all  skin  diseases  use  Vep  oil  as  an  oint- 
ment and  give  the  infusion  of  Atalotaka  to  drink.  For 
worms  (inside  the  stomach)  give  cow's  urine  with  pow- 
dered Vlalari  in  it.  If  the  elephant  is  getting  reduced 
and  weak  it  should  be  given  milk  or  meat  soup  with  Cuk- 
ku, Tippali  and  grapes  well  mixed  in  it.  If  there  is  lack 
of  appetite  it  is  to  be  given  Mulgaudana  (rice  boiled 

along  with  Cerupayar)to  which  is  added  Cukku,  Mulaku 
and  Tippali.  If  it  is  Gulma  it  should  be  given  sesame 
oil  boiled  with  the  following:  Trikotpakkonna,  Cukku, 
Mulaku  Tippali,  Kotuvelikkilarigu,  Nagadantiveru, 
Erikkinveru,  Natkkotpakkonna,  Milk  and  Attittippali. 
Navara  rice  with  sort  of  cerupayar  can  also  be  given. 
For  swellings  on  the  face,  a  paste  made  of  tender 
Kuvala  fruits  can  be  rubbed  at  the  site  of  the  swelling. 
For  all  sorts  of  pains  in  the  stomach  rice  well  mixed 
with  the  powder  made  by  grinding  together  Vlalari, 
Kutakappalayari,  Asafoetida,  Carala,  Manjal,  Mara- 
manjal may  be  given. 

The  best  food  for  elephants  is  the  rice  of  Navara,  Vrlhi 
and  cennellu.  Yava  and  wheat  arc  next  to  the  above. 
Any  other  food  is  inferior  to  these.  Yava  and  sugarcane 
will  give  strength  to  elephants.  Dry  yava  rice  is  not 
good.  Milk  and  meat  cooked  with  carminative  ingre- 
dients are  good  for  elephants  who  have  gone  lean. 
If  the  elephants  receive  great  injuries  in  a  battle  the 
meat  of  birds  like  crow,  fowl,  cuckoo  and  Hari  mixed 
with  honey  is  good.  Fumigation  by  the  burning  of 
chilli,  fish,  Vlalari,  caustic  soda,  Puttal,  Piram  and 
maramanjal  mixed  together  is  effective.  Dropping 
honey  medicated  with  tippali  tandula,  sesame  oil,  and 
fruit  honey  in  the  eyes  is  not  only  good  for  the  eyes  but 
is  also  inducive  of  digestion.  Make  an  ointment  with 
the  faces  of  the  birds  cataka  and  Paravata  mixed  with 
the  burnt  skin  of  Natpamara  dissolved  in  light  spirit. 
If  this  ointment  is  applied,  the  elephant  would  defeat 
all  enemies  in  a  battle.  Powder  Nilotpala,  Muttaiiga 
and  Takara  and  make  an  ointment  using  rice  gruel. 
Applying  this  ointment  in  the  eye  is  excellent. 
If  the  nails  grow  they  should  be  cut  at  least  once  a 
month.  Once  in  a  month  an  oil  bath  is  good  for  the 
elephants.  Elephant  sheds  should  be  spread  with  cow- 
dung  discs  and  dust.  Doing  Seka  with  ghee  during 
autumn  and  summer  is  advisable.  (Chapter  287,  Agni 

1.  Vlalari— The  grain  of  Vial— Vidanga   (Babreng) 

2.  Triphala — -A  combination  of  the  three  fruits  : 

a)  amalaki  (Emblic  Myrobalam)  b)  Vibhitaki  (Beleric  Myrobalam)  and  c)  Haritaki  (Myrobalam) 

3.  Gukku — Sunthi  (dry  ginger) 

4.  Mulaku — Raktamarica  (chilli) 

5.  Tippali — Pippali  (long  pepper) 

6.  Kuvala — Vilva  (Bengal  Kins) 

7.  Paccotti — Lodhra  (symplocos  Racemosa) 

8.  Tatiri— Dhataki  (Grislea  Tomentosa) 

9.  Nasyam — A  method  of  introducing  medicine  through  the  nose 

10.  Intappu — SallakI  Puspa  (Flower  of  Boswellia  Thurifera) 

11.  Muttanga— Musta  (Cyperus  Rotendus)  Kanci  means  rice  boiled   with   water  and   Muttanga  Kanci  means  rice  and muttaiiga  boiled 

12.  Jiraka— Jiraka  (cumin  seeds) 

13.  Dasamula — A  combination  often  herbs. 

14.  Mutirappuh 

15.  Kakkappanacci  —  Kakatindu 

16.  Astalavanas— Eight  salts  like  common  salt,  rock  salt,  magnesium  sulphate  etc. 

17.  Atalotaka— Atarusa  (Vasaka) 

18.  Cerupayar — Mudga  (green-grain) 

19.  Gulma 

20.  Trikotpakkonna— Trivrt  (Turbithroot) 

21.  Kotuvelikkilangu — Gitraka  (Plumbago  rose) 

22.  Nagadantiveru — Root  of  Nagadanti  (Glancous  leaved  Physicnut) 

23.  Erikkin  Veru— Root  of  Arkka  (Gigantic  swallow  wort) 

24.  Natkkotpakkonna — •Krsna  Trivrt 

25.  Attittippali- — Hasti-pippali 

26.  Navara — Sastika — A  kind  of  rice. 

27.  Garala — Sarala  (long  leaved  pine) 

28.  Manjal — Haridra  (Turmeric) 

29.  Maramanjal — Darvi 

30.  Vrihi— Cinah  (A  kind  of  paddy)  (Continued) 




ANAKA.     A  person  of  the  Yadava  dynasty.     (See   under 

ANAKADUNDUBHI.  An  epithet  of  Vasudeva,  father 
of  Sri  Krsna. 

ANANDA.  A  forest  on  the  top  of  the  mountain  Maha- 
meru.  It  was  inhabited  by  celestial  damsels,  devas, 
gandharvas  and  Maharsis.  (Chapter  93,  Bhumi 
Khanda,  Padma  Purana)  . 

ANANDA  (CAKSUSA)!  Son  of  Maharsi  Anamitra.  It 
was  he  who  was  born  as  Caksusa,  the  sixth  Manu. 
There  is  a  story  behind  his  birth.  One  day,  while  his 
mother  was  keeping  him  in  her  lap  and  caressing  him 
the  baby  laughed  and  questioned  "Oh  mother  why  are 
you  caressing  me,  but  look  at  those  two  cats.  They 
consider  me  as  their  food".  After  some  time  one  of  the 
cats  took  the  child  away  and  put  it  in  the  cradle  of  the 
child  of  King  Vikranta.  Vikranta  took  the  child  as  his 
for  granted  and  reared  him.  At  the  time  of  Upanayana 
the  King  asked  the  boy  to  prostrate  before  his  mother  at 
which  the  boy  exclaimed  "Oh  King,  I  am  not  your  son. 
Your  son  is  at  some  other  place.  By  births  and  rebirths 
all  of  us  have  many  mothers  and  so  it  is  better  to  be 
above  rebirths".  After  having  said  so  much  Ananda 
went  to  the  forest  and  started  doing  penance.  Brahma 
appeared  before  him  and  blessing  him  said  that  he 
would  become  the  sixth  Manu  and  lead  the  world  to 
righteousness.  By  the  blessing  of  Brahma  Ananda  was 
reborn  as  Caksusamanu.  (Sec  under  Caksusa).  (Mar- 
kandeya  Purana). 

ANANDAVARDHANA.  A  great  critic  of  Sanskrit  litera- 
ture. He  lived  in  the  9th  century  A.D.  He  expounded 
his  theory  of  Dhvanivada  by  120  Karikas.  His  own 
commentary  of  the  Karikas  is  the  book  called  Dhvanya- 
loka.  There  are  four  parts  for  Dhvanyaloka  and  each 
part  is  called  an  Udyota. 

There  is  a  belief  among  a  few  that  the  Karikas  were 
written  by  another  scholar,  Sahrdaya,  and  that  Ananda- 
vardhana  had  written  only  a  commentary  on  it.  He 
was  a  member  of  the  royal  council  of  Avantivarma 
who  ruled  Kashmir  during  the  period  854-884  A.D. 
It  is  believed  that  he  wrote  Dhvanyaloka  in  850  A.D. 
Many  commentaries  have  been  written  of  Dhvanyaloka 
of  which  the  one  written  by  Abhinavagupta  is  consider- 
ed to  be  the  best. 

ANARTTA.  Grandson  of  Vaivasvatamanu.  He  was  a 
king,  son  of  Saryati. 

1  .  Genealogy.  Descending  in  order  from  Visnu-Brahma- 
Marici-KaSyapa-Vivasvan  -  Vaivasvatamanu  -  Saryati  - 

Sixteen  sons  were  born  to  Vaivasvatamanu:  Manu, 
Yama,  YamI,  Asvinikumara,  Revanta,  Sudyumna,  Iks- 
vaku,  Nrga,  Saryati,  Dista,  Dhrsta,  Kariisa,  Narisyanta, 
Nabhaga,  Prsadhra  and  Kavi.  Of  these  Saryati  got 
two  children,  Sukanya  and  Anartta.  Sukanya.  became 
the  wife  of  Cyavana. 

2}0ther  details.  It  was  this  king  who  built  the  fortresses 
at  the  town  of  Kusasthall(Dvaraka)  .  Varuna  submerg- 

ed in  the  ocean  all  the  fortresses  built  by  him  and  the 
place  for  sometime  remained  as  a  forest-land.  (Dasama 
Skandha,  BhagavataKilippattu).  It  was  after  that  that 
Sri  Krsna  made  that  land  beautiful  and  called  it 
Dvaraka.  The  country  ruled  over  by  Anartta  was  called 
Anarttam.  During  his  regime  there  lived  in  his  land  a 
very  great  scholar  named  Vedaratha.  (Ume«anavrata, 
Siva  Purana)  See  under  Vedaratha. 

ANARTTA  (M).  A  place  in  ancient  Bharata.  Arjuna 
conquered  this  place.  (Sloka  4,  Chapter  26,  Sabha 

_  Parva,  M.B.). 

ANDHRA.  The  present  Andhra  Pradesa.  It  was  famous 
even  from  puranic  times  and  it  was  annexed  by  Saha- 
deva  by  defeating  its  ruler  in  a  game  of  dice. 

ANGARISTHA.  A  king  of  ancient  Bharata.  (Slokas 
13  and  14,  Chapter  123,  Sand  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ANGIRASAKALPA.  A  samhita  division  of  Atharva- 
veda.  The  five  samhita  divisions  of  Atharvaveda 
written  by  MunjikeSa  are  the  best.  They  are:  The 
Naksatra  Kalpa  dealing  with  the  puj a  rites  of  the 
stars;  The  veda  Kalpa  dealing  with  the  rites  associated 
with  Brahma,  the  Rtvik;  The  Samhita  Kalpa,  dealing 
with  the  use  and  practice  of  Mantras;  The  Ahgirasa 
Kalpa  dealing  with  sorcery;  and  the  Santi  Kalpa 
dealing  with  matters  relating  to  the  welfare  and 
control  of  animals  like  horses  and  elephants.  (Chapter  6, 
Arhsam  3  of  Visnu  Purana). 

A  very  chaste  wife  of  a  Brahmin.  By  the 
curse  of  Sakti,  son  of  Vasistha  Kalrnasapada,  a  king  of 
the  Iksvaku  dynasty  became  a  demon.  That  demon 
killed  and  devoured  the  husband  of  Aiigirasi.  Enraged 
at  this  the  Brahmin  lady  cursed  Kalmasapada  saying 
that  if  he  touched  his  wife  thereafter  he  would  die. 
That  was  why  Vasistha  had  to  beget  a  son  for  Kal- 
masapada of  his  wife.  (Slokas  16-22,  Chapter  181,  Adi 
Parva,  M.B.). 

ANGHRIKA.  One  of  the  sons  of  Visvamitra  who  were 
Brahmavadins.  (Sloka  54,  Chapter  4,  AnuSasana 
Parva,  M.B.). 

ANJALI.  A  sage  who  was  a  classmate  of  Saunaka. 
(Skandha  12,  Bhagavata) . 

ANJANA  KULA.  A  division  of  elephants  (in  the 
army).  (Slokas  17  and  18,  Chapter  112,  Drona  Parva, 

ANUSASANIKA  PARVA.  One  of  the  Parvans  of  the 
Mahabharata.  (See  under  Mahabharata') . 

APA.  One  of  the  Astavasus.  The  Astavasus  are  Apa, 
Dhruva,  Soma,  Dharma,  Anila,  Agni,  Pratyusa  and 
Prabhasa.  The  sons  of  Apa  are  Vaitanda,  Srama,  Santa 
and  Svani.  (See  under  Astavasus).  (Chapter  15,  Amsam 
1,  Visnu  Purana) . 

APAGA.  A  sacred  river.  It  is  said  that  if  one  gives  food 
to  one  brahmin  on  the  banks  of  this  river  it  will  be 
equivalent  to  giving  food  to  a  crore  of  brahmins  else- 
where. (Sloka  68,  Chapter  83,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 

31.  Gennellu — Sali  (Red  rice) 

32.  Yava — yava  (Barley) 

33.  Puttal 

34.  Piram 

35.  Tandula— same  as  Vial 

36.  Natpamara — Four  trees  :  Va(a,  Vata,  Asvattha  and  Udumbara. 

37.  Nilotpala — Nilapadma  (Blue  water-lilly) 

38.  Takara— Tagara 

39.  Seka— A  drip-bath  with  medicated  oil. 



ARWI  i 

&PASTAMBA.  An  ancient  sage.  He  once  consoled 
King  Dyumatsena.  (Sloka  18,  Chapter  298,  Vana 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

1 )  Ho  jo    he  got  his    name.  Once  a   brahmin  did  not  get 
a  suitable  man  toofficiate  as  priest  for  a   sraddha  cere- 
mony. He    then    prayed  to    his    ancestors,  Visvedevas 
and  Mah'ivisnu  for  help  and  then  Apastamba  appeared 
before  him.  The  brahmin  gave  him  food  to  his   heart's 
content  and  asked  him  how  he  felt.  To  the   surprise  of 
the  brahmin  Apastamba  replied,  he  wanted  some  more 
and  thus  made  the  Sraddha  ineffective.    The   brahmin 
got  angry   and    cursed  him    by  sprinkling    on  his  face 
water  taken  in  his  palm.  But  before  the  water-particles 
reached  his  face  Apastamba  ordered  the  water-drops  to 
remain    still.  Water   stopped   stiff  and  still  midway  by 
the   power    of  the  sage.  Because  water  (Apa)  became 
stiff  (Stamba)  the  rsi  was  named  Apastamba.  (Brahma 
Purana) . 

2)  How  Apastamba  tirtha  came  into  existence.  Once  he  met 
Agastya  Muni  and  asked  him  who  was  superior  among 
the   gods   Brahma,   Visnu    and  Siva.  Agastya  declared 
that  Siva  stood  supreme  of  the  lot  and  gave  him  advice 
as  to  how  to   please   Siva.    Following   his    instructions 
Apastamba  did  penance  on  the  banks  of  the  river    Gau- 
tami    and  Siva    appeared  before  him,  blessed  him,  and 
made    that   place  a  holy  one.    Siva  declared  that  those 
who,  bathed  at  that  place  would  obtain    'Divyajnana' 
(Divine    knowledge   enabling   one    to    know   the  past, 
present   and    future) .    From    then  onwards   that  place 
was  known  as  Apastamba  tirtha. 

3 )  Other  details.    Apastamba    had    a  very   chaste   and 
humble   wife    named   Aksasutra.  Their  son  was  Garki. 
'Grhyasutrasarhgraha'  containing  a  prayer  and  two  man- 
tras is  a  contribution  to  the  holy  science  by  Apastamba. 
Many  Hindus    follow    it    even    now.    He   had   stated 
that    the   decrease   in    the    number    of  great  sages  was 
because  of  the  fact  that  people  were  not   practising  the 
control  of  the  senses  as  before. 

APADDHARMA  PARVA.  A  sub-divisional  Parva  of  the 
Mahabharata.  (See  under  Mahabharata). 

APA  VAN  I.  Another  name  of  sage  Vasis^ha.  (Sloka  5, 
Chapter  99,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

APA  VAN  II.  An  ancient  sage.  Karttavlryarjuna  once 
burnt  the  aSrama  of  this  rsi  and  he  cursed  Agni  and 
Karttavlryarjuna.  (Slokas  42  and  43,  Chapter  49,  Santi 
Parva,  M.B.). 

APODADHAUMYA.     (See  Ayodadhaomya). 

APTA.  A  well-known  serpent  of  the  KaSyapa  dynasty. 
(Sloka  8,  Chapter  35,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

APtJRAl^A.  A  well-known  serpent  of  the  Kasyapa  dy- 
nasty. (Sloka  6,  Chapter  35,  Adi  Parva). 

AR.  The  significance  of  the  number  six _among  the  an- 
cients, is  given  below.  (In  Malayalam  Ar  means  six). 

1)  Six  factors  which   reduce    the  span  of  life.  Eating  dry 
meat,    Drinking  curd    at     night,    Sleeping   at    dawn, 
Drinking  impure  water,    Exposure  to  sun's  heat  in    the 
morning.    Inhaling  fumes  from  dead  body. 

2)  Six    divine    qualities.      Omniscience,    Omnipresence, 
Omnipotence,    Sarvakaranatva      (being    the    cause    of 
everything);    Sarvanityatva    (immortality)      and   Sar- 
vesVaratva  ( having  domination  over  everything) . 

3)  Six  noblsst  qualities.  Truth;  Wisdom,  Mercy,  Justice, 
fortitude  in  grief,  control  of  anger. 

4)  Six  $si    Dharmas    (Duties  of  Sages) .    Brahmacarya, 

Absolute  truth,  Japa,  Jnana  (wisdom),  Niyama,  Sense 
of  Justice. 

5)  Six  qualities  of  noble  wives.  A  minister  in  business,    a 
servant-maid  in  action,  the   goddess  Laksmi  in  appear- 
ance,   the   Earth    in   patience,  a  mother  in  love  and  a 
prostitute  in  bed. 

6)  Six  qualities  of  a  bad  u  if e.  Habit  of  dispute,  stealing 
of  money,  showing  favour  to  strangers,  scandal-monger- 
ing,  taking    food    earlier   than    the  husband,  spending 
most  of  the  time  in  other  houses. 

7)  Six   Vedahgas.   Siksa,   Kalpa,    Vyakarana,    Nirukta, 
Jyotisa,  Chandas. 

ARALIKA.  A  mahout  who  could  control  elephants 
that  had  gone  mad  temporarily.  (Sloka  9,  Chapter  2, 
Virata  Parva.  M.B.) . 

ARAINJEYAPARVA.  A  sub-divisional  Parva  of  the  Maha- 
bharata- (See  under  Mahabharata). 

ARCOKA.  A  mountain  in  front  of  the  forest  Saindhava 
inhabited  by  Manisipurusas.  (Sloka  16,  Chapter  125, 

_  Vana  Parva,  M.B.) .' 

ARJAVA.  Son  of  Subala  and  brother  of  Sakuni.  He 
was  killed  by  Iraviin  son  of  Aijuna.  (Bhisma  Parva, 

AROCAKA(M).  A  country  of  ancient  Bharata.  The 
people  of  this  place  are  called  Arocakas.  (Sloka  7, 
Chapter  51,  Bhisma  Parva,  M.B.). 

ARSA(M).  A  form  of  marriage.  Brahma  is  the  form  of 
marriage  in  which  the  bride  is  given  to  a  man  of  good 
ancestry  and  fine  character.  Marriage  by  giving  the 
bride  after  receiving  a  pair  of  cows  from  the  bride- 
groom is  called  Arsa.  Prajapatya  is  the  form  of  marriage 
in  which  the  bride  is  given  to  the  man  who  asks  for 
her.  When  the  bride  is  given  with  dowry,  the  marriage 
is  known  as  Asuram.  Marriage  with  the  mutual  love  and 
consent  is  Glndharva.  Capturing  the  bride  after  a  fight 
and  marrying  her  by  force  is  Raksasa.  Marriage  after 
deceiving  the  bride  is  called  Paisaca.  These  are  the 
seven  types  of  marriage.  According  to  the  author  of  the 
Smrti  another  form  of  marriage  known  as  DAIVA  is 
also  mentioned.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  154). 

ARSTISENA.  A  Maharsi.  In  the  Mahabharata,  Vana 
Parva,  Chapter  159  there  is  a  reference  to  the  Pandavas 
visiting  this  sage  during  their  life  in  the  forest.  Ars{i- 
sena's  asrama  was  midway  between  Badaiyasrama  and 
Kubera's  capital. 

Power  of  Tapas.  In  Krtayuga  this  sage  did  rigorous 
tapas  in  Prthudakatirtha.  Owing  to  the  rigour  of  the 
tapas  he  obtained  all  the  chief  vedas.  He  gave  three 
boons  to  that  sacred  tirtha  : — 

1 .  Those  who  bathe  in  this  tirtha  will  get  the  benefit  of 
ASvamedha  yaga. 

2.  There  will  be  no  fear  of  snakes  in  this  tirtha. 

3.  A    slight    effort    made    here,    will  be  rewarded  with 
greater  results. 

After  giving  these  three  boons  to  the  river  Sarasvati 
which  is  Prthudakatirtha  the  sage  attained  Brahmin- 
hood  and  entered  Devaloka.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva, 
Chapter  40,  Verses  3-9). 

ARTTAYANI.  Salya,  son  of  Rtayana.  He  was  noted 
for  his  great  honesty  and  love  of  truth.  (Sloka  56,  Chap- 

_  ter32,  Salya  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ARTIMAN.  A  mantra  which  eliminates  all  kinds  of  fear. 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  50,  Versus  23-26) . 

ARUiifl  I.  A  disciple  of  the  sage  Ayodhadhaumya. 
(For  details  see  under  Ayodhadhaumya) . 




ISI  II.     A  cobra  born  in  the  family  of  the  serpent, 
Dhrtarastra.    This  cobra  fell  dead  at_the  Sarpasatra  of 

_  Janamejaya.  (Slokal9,  Chapter  57,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ARUTjII  III.  A  son  born  to  Kasyapa  of  his  wife  Vinata. 
(Sloka  40,  Chapter  65,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

ARUiyi  IV.  A  soldier  of  the  Kaurava  army.  He  fought 
against  Arjuna  along  with  Sakuni.  (Sloka  122,  Chap- 

_  ter  156,  Drona  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ARUT^I  V.  One  of  the  one  hundred  and  eight  Upanisads. 

ARUSl,  A  daughter  ofManu.  Cyavana  Maharsi  married 
her.  They  got  a  son  named  Aurva.  The  child  was 
taken  from  the  thigh  of  Arusi.  RcTka  was  the  son  of  this 
Aurva.  Rclka  was  the  father  of  Jamadagni,  father  of 
Parasurama.  Even  from  childhood  Aurva  was  a  bold, 
bright  and  good  boy.  (Slokas  47  and  48,  Chapter  66, 
Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

ARYAS.  The  Rgveda  gives  us  most  of  the  information 
regarding  the  Aryas  who  came  to  the  north  of  India 
during  the  times  of  the  Vedas  through  the  passes  on 
that  north-western  side  of  Bharata.  Sirdar  K.M.  Panikar 
writing  in  his  preface  to  the  'Rgvedasarhhita'  by  Poet 
Vallathol  summarises  the  information  available  in  the 
Rgveda  about  Aryan  culture  and  says:  "When  the 
Aryans  first  entered  India  they  were  rich  in 
cattle.  They  used  to  breed  goats,  dogs,  donkeys,  and 
horses.  The  elephant  was  unknown  to  them.  In  the 
Vedas  the  vehicle  of  Ind  a  is  a  horse  and  not  an  eleph- 
ant. When  hailing  Indra  they  shout  'come,  come  on 
your  horse-back'.  The  Veda  does  not  say  anything 
about  how  Indra  got  the  elephant,  Airavata,  as  his 
vehicle.  Sing  to  the  glory  of  Indra  against  whom  in 
his  chariot  driven  by  two  horses  no  enemy  would  dare 
to  face. 

The  Rgveda  gives  great  importance  to  agriculture. 
Areas  under  cultivation  were  called  Urvara  and 
'Ksetra'.  Fields  were  ploughed  by  attaching  six,  eight 
and  even  twelve  bullocks  to  the  plough.  Water  was  taken 
from  hradas  and  Kulyakas  (ponds  and  tanks)  for  the 
purpose  of  irrigation.  Agriculture  was  a  very  familiar 
art  to  them.  They  used  to  cultivate  all  sorts  of  grains 
and  grams  including  yava.  They  conducted  trade  by 
the  exchange  of  goods  generally.  There  is  a  reference 
ii  one  place  of  the  use  of  a  coin  'Niska' 
The  Aryas  were  clever  in  the  art  of  leather  work,  wood- 
work and  metallurgy.  They  were  well  versed  in  medi- 
cine also.  In  a  sukta  of  the  ninth  mandala  it  is  stated 
that  the  father  of  a  rsi  was  a  medical  practitioner. 
There  are  references  to  many  industries  also.  Weav- 
ing was  a  very  important  industry  at  that  time.  Cotton 
cloth  and  woollen  blankets  were  made  by  them  on  a 
large  scale.  Iron  was  used  by  them  with  great  skill. 
The  manufacture  of  armours  and  the  descriptions  about 
them  in  Rgveda  are  ample  evidence  of  the  proficiency 
of  the  Aryas  in  ironmongery  and  blacksmithy.  Sea 
voyage  was  not  familiar  to  them.  References  to  traders 
cruising  in  boats  in  the  Sindhu  river  do  not  give  much 
importance  to  the  cruising.  In  food  rice  and  ghee  were 
important.  Meat  was  also  relished.  Rsis  wore  animal 
skins  but  others  wore  dhotis  and  shawls. 
During  the  Rgvedic  times  their  social  structure  was 
divided  into  four  stages:  Grama  was  a  colony  of  fami- 
lies and  was  the  nucleus  of  the  society.  A  number  of 
gramas  formed  into  a  place  called  Visaya.  A  number 
of  Visayas  became  what  was  known  as  'Janam'.  The 
importance  of  Janas  can  be  understood  by  the  state- 

ments made  about  Pancajanas  and  the  existence  of 
special  Janas  like  Yadavajana  and  Bharata  Jana. 
There  is  no  wonder  why  the  Aryas  v\  ho  had  to  live  among 
enemies  accepted  kingship.  The  Rgveda  narrates  the 
difficulties  people  would  have  to  encounter  if  they  were 
left  to  fight  their  enemies  without  a  proper  leader  and 
so  advocates  Kingship  and  gives  it  an  exalted  position 
in  their  social  structure.  Sukta  22,  Anuvaka  12  of 
Mandala  10  describes  the  coronation  of  a  King  thus: 
"I  do  hereby  crown  you  as  King.  Come  to  our  midst. 
Rule  us  with  courage  and  an  unwavering  mind.  Let 
all  your  subjects  love  you.  Let  thy  kingdom  remain 
with  you  for  ever".  The  next  mantra  is  also  of  che 
same  idea.  A  King  is  above  punishment.  The  veda 
speaks  about  many  famous  kings  of  which  the  following 
are  worth  mentioning.  Divodasa,  Sud  s,  Ambarlsa, 
Nahusa  and  Pururavas. 

The  chief  priest  was  always  the  political  advisor  also. 
Visvamitra  and  Vasistha  were  two  great  priests  of  the 
Bharata  dynasty.  There  were  other  priests  also.  Men- 
tion is  there  about  a  Rajasabha  though  nothing  is  said 
about  their  powers  or  functions.  It  can  be  surmised 
that  theSabha  was  constituted  of  only  men  of  character 
and  learning. 

It  is  interesting  to  note  the  type  of  domestic  life  in 
vogue  then.  A  father  had  the  right,  to  sell  his  children, 
To  cite  an  example  is  the  story  of  SunaSsepha  who  was 
made  into  a  cow  and  sold  to  Visvamitra  who  looked 
after  him  well.  The  father  had  the  right  to  make  his 
children  lose  all  rights  over  his  properties.  Visvamitra 
sent  out  from  his  family  fifty  sons  who  refused  to  obey 
him.  Dowry  was  current  then.  Sukta  11,  Anuvaka  3, 
Mandalam  10  ordains  that  the  bride  should  go  to  the 
house  of  her  husband  after  the  marriage.  Polygamy  was 
not  objected  to.  There  is  a  mantra  to  harass  the  co-wife 
and  its  purpose  is  to  make  the  husband  more  attached 
to  her  who  hates  the  co-wife.  The  originator  of  this 
mantra  was  Indranl,  the  queen  of  Indra.  Indra  had 
many  wives.  Marriage  was  considered  as  a  necessary 
duty.  Widow  marriage  was  allowed. 
The  Rgveda  gives  the  picture  of  a  society  of  people 
who  were  always  at  war  with  each  other.  "We  are 
surrounded  by  mighty  enemies.  Help  us".  This  is  the 
slogan  that  rings  out  from  the  Rgveda. 
The  Rgveda  is  a  history  of  the  Aryas.  The  march  from 
Kubhatata  (Kubul)  to  the  banks  of  Yamuna  is  depict- 
ed there.  It  was  at  Kubhatata  that  the  mantras  were 
first  made.  When  they  reach  the  banks  of  the  Ganga 
the  period  of  Rgveda  ends.  The  crossing  of  each  of 
the  five  rivers  of  Pancanada  is  treated  as  a  big  event 
by  the  rsis.  When  they  saw  the  huge  and  deep  river, 
Sindhu,  they  were  amazed.  The  wonder  is  reflected  in  a 
lovely  mantra.  It  was  after  crossing  Sindhu  that  they  had 
to  oppose  the  'Dasyus'.  The  Rgveda  itself  records  that 
the  Dasyus  were  more  cultured  than  the  Aryas.  $am- 
bara,  a  Dasyu  King,  was  the  ruler  of  a  hundred  cities. 
Their  fortresses  were  strong.  They  have  been  described 
in  the  Rgveda  as  Asvamayi,  Ayasi  and  Satabhujl. 
The  chief  opponents  of  the  Aryas  were  a  tribe  of  people 
called  Panis.  From  the  Nirukta  of  Yaska  we  are  given 
to  understand  that  the  Panis  were  mainly  engaged  in 
trade.  The  Rgveda  names  many  Dasyu  kings  of  which 
the  following  few  were  more  daring  and  brave  and  the 
Aryas  acknowledged  their  superior  strength  and  courage : 
Dhuni,  Cumuri,  Vipru,  Varcis  and  Sambara.  Among 




the  several  divisions  of  the  Dasyus,  the  Simyus,  KIkatas, 
Sigrus  and  Yaksus  ranked  foremost  in  power.  They  are 
described  as  having  black  colour  and  flat  noses  and 
speaking  a  language  different  from  that  of  the  Aryas. 
We  may  surmise  from  these  facts  that  they  belonged 
to  the  Dravida  class  of  people.  They  never  conducted 
yaga  nor  did  they  worship  gods  like  Indra.  They  were 
idol  worshippers  for  they  have  been  abused  as  'Sisna- 
devas'.  Later  the  Aryas  learnt  from  the  Dasyus  the 
worship  of  Siva,  Devi  and  Liuga. 

Conquering  these  daring  and  cultured  enemies  the 
Aryas  reached  the  banks  of  the  Yamuna  to  find  to  their 
pleasant  surprise  a  radical  change  in  themselves.  The 
Bharatas  settled  themselves  in  the  land  between  the 
Yamuna  and  Gaiiga  and  remained  friendly  with  the 
Dasyus  living  to  the  east  of  Ganga.  The  Aryas  who 
settled  down  in  Pancanada  were  strong  and  to  prevent 
them  from  coming  and  conquering  them  Bharata  tried 
to  keep  them  remain  on  the  other  side  of  Sutudri 
(Sutlej) .  This  led  to  a  war  called  Dasarajna. 
This  war  is  to  be  considered  as  one  of  the  most  impor- 
tant of  wars  in  the  world.  Those  who  opposed  Sudas 
were  Aryas  though  among  the  supporters  of  Sudas  were 
also  Aryas.  It  was  the  people  under  Sudls  who  came 
out  victorious  in  that  war  and  put  a  stop  to  further 
conquests  by  the  Aryas.  From  thereafter  the  Aryas 
joined  hands  with  the  aborigines  and  laid  the  foundation 
for  the  great  Hindu  civilization.  Thereafter  the  Rgveda 
states  about  prayers  for  help  to  combat  'our  enemies 
of  Aryas  and  Dasyus'.  The  gods  who  were  recognised 
later  were  those  who  were  not  found  in  the  vedas  of 
the  Aryas.  The  worship  of  Mahayogi  and  Devi  found 
in  Mohenjodaro  is  an  evidence  of  this  change. 

ARYA.  One  of  the  seven  mothers  who  were  present  at 
the  birth  of  Subrahmanya.  (Sloka  13,  Chapter  228, 
Vana  Parva,  MB.) . 

ARYAKA.  A  famous  serpent.  (Sloka  7,  Chapter  35, 
Adi  Parva,  M.B. )  Aryaka  is  associated  with  Bhlmasena 
in  the  following  story.  Once  Duryodhana  gave  snake 
poison  in  his  food  to  Bhlmasena.  Unaware  Bhlma  took 
his  food  as  usual  and  went  to  bathe  in  the  river.  After 
some  time  Bhlma  became  unconscious  due  to  the  effect 
of  the  poison  and  fell  flat  in  the  river. 
Immediately  Duryodhana  bound  him  by  ropes  and  put 
him  in  more  deep  waters.  Bhlma  reaching  the  bottom 
was  bitten  by  all  the  snakes  there.  This  fortunately 
served  as  an  antidote  and  the  poison  in  Bhlma's  body 
was  neutralized  and  Bhlma  became  his  old  self  again 
and  killed  all  the  serpents.  Those  serpents  who  escaped 
went  and  brought  their  chief,  Vasuki.  At  that  time  it  was 
Aryaka  who  advised  Vasuki  to  give  him  'rasapana'. 
(Slokas  64-68,  Chapter  127,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

ARYAKU.  Another  name  for  Durgadevi.  (Chapter  12, 
Agni  Purana) . 

ARYAVARTA.  Another  name  for  Bharata.  There  is 
also  a  place  of  that  name.  According  to  Smrti  the  land 
lying  between  the  Himalayas  and  the  Vindhyas  is  called 

_  Aryavarta.  (Sloka  15,  Chapter  325,  Sand  Parva,  M.B.). 

ARYAVARTA.     A  king  of  the  dynasty  of  Visvakarma. 
Genealogy.  Descending  in  order  from  Visnu  are  Brahma, 
Dharma,  Prabhasa,  Visvakarma,  Priyavrata,  Agnldhra, 
Nabhi,  Rsabha  and  Aryavarta. 

Of  these  Rsabhxgotof  his  wife  Ja/antI  twenty  sons: 
Bharata,  KuSlvarta,  Ilavarti,  Brahmavarta,  Aryavarta 
Malaya,  Ketu,  Bhidrasena,  Indrasprk,  Vidarbha, 

Klkata,  Kavi,  Hari,  Antarlksa,  Prabuddha,  Pippalayana, 
Avirhotra,  Dramida,  Cainasa  and  Karabhajana.  Of  these 
Bharata  ruled  over  this  land  and  gave  it  the  name 
Bharata.  Brothers  of  Bharata  ruled  different  parts  of  this 
land.  Dramida's  land  became  known  later  as  Dravida 
(Daksinabharata) . 

ASADHA  I.  A  Ksatriya  King.  He  was  the  incarnation 
of  a  Raksasa  called  Krodhavasa.  Kas/apa  was  the  son 
of  Marlci,  Brahma's  son.  Kasyapa  married  Krodha- 
vasa, daughter  of  Daksa.  The  Raksasa  group  called 
Krodhuvasas  were  the  children  of  Krodhavasa.  Many 
Ksatriya  kings  trace  their  descent  from  this  group  of 
Raksasas.  The  names  of  such  Ksatriya  Kings  are  given 
below:  Madraka,  Karnavestha,  Siddhartha,  Klta- 
kariddha,  Subahu,  Balhika,  Kratha,  Vicitra,  Suratha, 
Ciravasas,  Kauravya,  Dantavaktra,  Durjaya,  Rukmi, 
Janamejaya,  Asadha,  Vayuvega,  Bhuritejas,  Ekalavya, 
Sumitra,  Gomukha,  Vatadhana,  and  Ksemadhurti. 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  6,  Verses  59-64). 

ASADHA  II.  Siva.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter 
17,Verse  121). 

ASADHABHCTI.     See  under  Pancatantra. 

ASADHA.  Name  of  a  month.  By  feasting  in  this  month, 
one  will  have  many  sons  and  much  wealth.  (M.B.,  Anu- 
sasana Parva,  Chapter  106,  Verse  26) . 

ASADHA.  Name  of  a  star.  After  observing  a  fast  on  the 
day  of  this  star,  if  curd  is  given  to  a  Brahmin  of  noble 
birth,  one  can  take  rebirth  in  a  family  having  many 
cows.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  64,  Verses 

_  25-26). 

ASADHAKA.  A  mahout  in  the  Udayana  story.  In 
Kathasaritsagara,  Kathamukhalambaka,  5th  Taranga,  we 
find  a  reference  to  an  elephant  called  Bhadravati  and  a 
mahout  named  Asadhaka  in  the  palace  of  the  heroine, 

ASAMGA.     See  under  ANA§A. 

ASAMGAPLAYOGI.  A  King,  who  was  generous  by 
nature.  In  the  Rgveda,  there  is  a  reference  to  this  King 
who  once  lost  his  masculinity  and  was  transformed  into 
a  woman  but  was  restored  to  manhood  by  a  Muni 
named  Medhyatithi. 

ASANA.  Posture  in  Yogabhyasa.  There  are  different 
types  ofasanas.  The  chief  of  them  are  given  below: 

1 )  Bhujangasana,     Lying    flat,    face   downwards    on     a 
sheet  with  hands  placed  close  to    the    body   on    either 
side.  After  relaxing  all  the  muscles  of  the  body,  concen- 
trate the  mind  on  health.  Keeping    the   feet    close    to- 
gether and  pressing  the  knees  against  the  ground,  raise 
the  soles  upwards  to  the  sky.  Place  both  palms,  pressing 
against   the    ground,    touching    the    shoulders  on  both 
sides.    Then  raise    the  head   and  bend  the  neck  back- 
wards  as    far  as   possible.  At  this  time,  the  trunk  and 
legs  should  be  in  close  contact  with  the  ground.     Gra- 
dually raise  the  chest,  supported  by  the  hands  on   the 
ground.  Bring  the  head  down  in  the  same  way  as  it  was 
raised  and  restore  the  body  to  its  former  position.  This 
asana  strengthens  the  backbone. 

2)  Salabhasana.     Lie  flat  on  the  sheet,  face  downwards. 
Keep  the  legs  close  together  and  raise  the  feet  up    with 
the  heels  touching   each  other.    Place  the    hands    close 
to  the  body  on  either  side  and  close  the   fists    upwards. 
Place    the   fists    and  shoulders  close  to  the  ground  and 
make    the   whole   body  stiff  after  inhaling  the  breath. 
Then  try  to    raise  the    legs.  Support   the  weight  of  the 
body   with    the   breast    and  hands.  This  is  possible  by 



pressing  the  fists,  firmly  against  the  ground.  Until  the 
asana  is  completed,  do  not  send  out  the  breath.  Keep 
the  legs  straight  and  stiff.  The  lower  abdomen  and  legs 
may  be  raised  slightly.  This  makes  the  asana  complete. 
On  feeling  suffocation,  the  legs  must  be  brought  down 

Besides  these,  there  are  many  other  asanas  like  Dhanur, 
Pascimatanasana,      Halasana,      Mayarasana, 


Sarvaiigasana,  Matsy asana,  Sirsasana,  Arddhamatsy- 
endrasana,  Padahastasana,  Trikonasana,  Udcjlyasana, 
Nauli,  Viparltakarani,  Yogamudra,  Savasana,  etc.  (See 
under  Yoga)  . 

ASAVAHA  I.  A  son  of  Kasyapa  and  Aditi.  From  Visnu 
Brahma,  from  Brahma  Marici  and  from  Marlci  Kasyapa 
were  born.  Kasyapa  married  Aditi.  daughter  of  Daksa. 
Aditi  gave  birth  to  ten  sons  :  Brhadbhanu,  Caksur- 
atma,  Vibhavasu,  Rcika,  Savita,  Arka,  Bhanu,  Asavaha, 
Ravi  and  Vivasvan.  Vaivasvata  Manu  was  the  son  of 
Vivasvan.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  1,  Verse  42). 

ASAVAHA  II.  A  prince  of  the  Vfsni  dynasty.  He  was 
present  at  the  Svayariivara  of  Draupadi.  (M.B.,  Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  185,  Verse  19). 

ASRAMA.  Asramites  (Inmates  of  an  Asrama)have  to  pass 
through  four  stages.  The  four  stages  of  Brahmacarya. 
Garhasthya,  Vanaprastha  and  Sannyasa  are  known  as 
the  four  Asramas.  Visnu  Purana,  Part  III,  Chapter  9 
describes  each  of  the  Asramas  as  follows  : 

1.  Brahmacarya.     "After    Upanayana     a     boy    should 
maintain   a   Brahmacari's  vrata,  engage  himself  in  the 
study    of  the    Vedas,    suppress  his   indriyas    (the    five 
senses)  and  live  in  the  house  of  the    preceptor.   Living 
there  with   proper   observance    of  sauca,  customs  and 
vratas  he   should    serve  and   attend  on  the  Guru.  The 
study    of  Vedas    should   be  with  proper  observance  of 
Vratas   and    steady    attention.    A    Brahmacari    should 
worship  with  concentration,  the  Sun   and  Agni    at    the 
time  of  the  two   sandhyas  (dawn  and  dusk)    and   after 
that  he  should  do  obeisance  to  the  Guru.  When  the  Guru 
stands,  he  should  also  be  standing.  When  the  guru  walks, 
he  should  walk  behind  him  and  when  he  sits,  he  should 
sit  in  a  lower  position.  The  Sisya  (disciple-pupil)  should 
not  do  anything  against  the  guru.  When  the  guru  him- 
self asks,  the  Sisya  should  sit  in  front  of  him  and  recite 
Vedas  without  attending  to   anything  else.  After  that, 
with    his  permission    he  may  eat  food  which  has  been 
got   by    begging.    The  Sisya  may  take  his  bath  in  the 
water  only  after  the  Acarya  (guru)  has  taken  his   bath 
in  it.   Everyday  the  Camata,  darbha,  water  and  flowers 
which  the  guru  needs,  must  be   brought    and  supplied 
(by  the  Sisya). 

2.  Garhasthya.     After  the  study  of  the  Vedas  the  intelli- 
gent sisya  gives  Gurudaksina  (Payment  to  the  precep- 
tor)   and   with    the    consent   of  the  Guru,  enters  into 
Grhasthasrama.    Then  he  is  to  marry  and  by    earning 
money   from    a    suitable    occupation,  should   fulfil    all 
obligations    of  a    Grhastha  according  to    his  capacity. 
The  Grhastha  who  worships  the  Pitt's    with  Pindadana 
(offerings  of  rice  balls),  Devas  with  Yagas    (sacrifices), 
Rsis  with  Svadhyaya   (self  discipline),  Prajapatis   with 
begetting  of  children,  spirits  with  bali  (offering  of  food 
etc.)    and   the  whole  world  with  love,   attains  the  holy 
world  by  his  own  virtuous  deeds.  Grhasthasrama  is    the 
only  source  of  support   for  sannyasis   and    brahmacarls 
who  beg  their  food.  Therefore  feeding  them    is    an    act 
of  nobility.  Brahmanas  travel  from  country  to   country 

to  study  Vedas,  for  pilgrimage  and  for  seeing  the  places. 
The  Grhastha  is  the  only  refuge  and  support  of  those 
who  are  homeless,  who  do  not  carry  their  food  with 
them  and  those  who  spend  the  night  wherever  they 
reach.  If  such  people  come  to  his  house,  the  Grhastha 
should  welcome  them  with  kind  and  loving  words,  and 
give  them  bed,  seat  and  food.  The  guest  who  leaves  a 
house  disappointed,  is  really  departing  after  transfer- 
ring his  own  sins  to  that  householder  and  taking  away 
all  the  virtuous  deeds  of  the  householder.  It  is  not 
proper  for  the  Grhastha  to  treat  a  guest  with  disrespect, 
to  behave  rudely  or  treacherously  towards  him,  to  regret 
what  has  been  given  to  the  guest,  or  to  obstruct  or 
rebuke  him.  The  Grhastha  who  performs  the  supreme 
duty  of  Grhasthasrama  in  this  way  properly,  is  liberated 
from  all  secular  bonds  and  reaches  the  noblest  worlds. 

3.  Vanaprastha.     After   having  finished  all  his  duties  in 
this  way,    to   his   satisfaction,    the    Grhastha,  with  the 
commencement  of  old  age,  should  go  to  the  forest,  either 
after  entrusting  his  wife  to  his  sons  or  taking    her   also 
with  him.  There,  he  should  use  leaves,  roots  and  fruits 
for  his    food,    grow    hair   and  beard,  sleep  on  the  bare 
ground,  lead  the  life  of  a  tapasa  and  receive  and  honour 
all   classes  of  guests.    His    clothes,  sheets  and  blankets 
should   be   of  deer-skin   and  darbha  grass.  The  rule  is 
that  he  should  bathe  three  times  a  day.  Worship  of  gods, 
performing  homas,  hospitality  to  all  guests,  mendicancy 
— all  these  are  the  laudable   features    of  Vanaprastha. 
Any  oil  that  is  available  in  the  forest   is  to  be    used  for 
his  oil  bath.  Enduring  heat  and  cold,  performing  tapas, 
are  also  his  duties.  The  Muni  who  observes  this  rule  in 
Vanaprastha  with  due  austerity,  burns  up  all  his  evils  as 
with  fire  and  attains  the  eternal  worlds. 

4.  Sannyasa.  The  fourth  AsVama  is  that  of  the  Sannyasl. 
Before   entering    upon    the    fourth  Asrama  one  has  to 
renounce  the  love  of  travel,  wealth  and  wife    and   also 
give  up  all  spirit  of  rivalry.  One    who  embraces   sann- 
yasa    should   abandon    completely   the  efforts   for    the 
three  Purusarthas  of  Dharma,  Artha    and  Kama,   treat 
friends   and  foes    alike  and   continue  to  love  all  living 
beings.  Not  even  a  single  creature  should    be    offended 
by    thought,    word    or  deed.  Conquering    all  passions, 
the    Sannyasl    should  renounce  all    bonds  and  attach- 
ments. He  should  not  stay  in  a  village  more   than   one 
night  and  in  a  town  more  than    five  nights.  Even    that 
should   be  in  such  a   way  that  no  one  feels  any  love  or 
hatred   towards   him.  For  sustaining   life,  he  should  go 
about    begging   food   from    the  houses  of  the  people  of 
the   three  castes — Brahmins,  Ksatriyas  and  VaiSyas.  It 
should   be   after   all  people  have    taken  their  food  and 
put    out   the   cooking    fire.    The  Sannyasl   should  cast 
away  all  vices  like  Kama,  Krodha,  Garva,  Lobha,    and 
Moha  and  should  not  have  any  thought  of  self  in  any- 
thing. The  Muni  who  goes  about  giving  shelter    to    all 
creatures    will  not    have  to     fear    any    creature.  The 
Brahmana  who  follows  the  Sannyasasrama  as  described 
above   with    a    pure    heart  and  without  difficulty   will 
shine    like  fire  without  fuel  and  attain    Brahmaloka  in 

ASRAMAVASA  PARVA.  One  of  the  Parvas  in  the 
Mahabharata.  (See  under  Mahabharata) . 

ASRAMAVASIKA  PARVA.  One  of  the  Parvas  in  the 
Mahabharata.  (See  under  Mahabharata) . 

ASRAVYA.  A  muni  (sage)  in  Indra's  assembly.  (M.B., 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  7,  Verse  18). 



ASTlKA.  The  son  of  the  Mahai  si  Jaratkaru  and  his  wife, 
also  named  Jaratkaru.  He  stopped  King  Janamejaya's 
Sarpasatra  and  saved  the  nagas. 

1 )  Birth.  There  is  a  story  about  Astlka's  birth  in  the 
Devi  Bhagavata.  Long  ago  the  people  of  the  world  were 
so  much  troubled  by  the  serpents,  that  they  sought  pro- 
tection from  KasVapa  Prajapati.  To  find  a  remedy  for 
this,  Kasyapa  discussed  the  matter  with  Brahma.  To 
put  an  end  to  the  troubles  from  the  serpents,  Brahma 
suggested  that  a  number  of  mantras  and  a  deity  as  the 
basis  of  those  mantras  should  be  created.  Accordingly 
Kasyapa  created  many  mantras  and  Manasa  Devi  as  the 
basic  deity  of  those  mantras.  She  is  named  "Manasa- 
devi"  because  Kasyapa  created  her  by  his  mental 
power.  ManasadevI  has  eleven  other  names  also,  name- 
ly Jaratkaru,  Jagatgauri,  SiddhayoginI,  Vaisnavi,  Naga- 
bhagini,  Saivi,  NagesVari,  Jaratkarupriya,  Astikamata, 
Visahara  and  Mahajnanayuta. 

ManasadevI  (Jaratkaru)  when  quite  young,  went  to 
Kailasa  for  doing  tapas  (penance) .  There  she  did  tapas 
to  Siva  for  a  thousand  years.  At  last  Siva  appeared  and 
blessed  her  with  divine  wisdom.  She  returned  with 
great  learning  and  devotion.  (Devi  Bhagavata,  Navama 
Skandha) . 

At  that  time,  a  Muni  (saga)  named  Jaratkaru,  when 
travelling  through  the  forest  happened  to  see  his  pitrs 
(souls  of  forefathers)  hanging  over  a  precipice  at 
the  end  of  a  blade  of  grass.  They  were  hanging  preca- 
riously at  the  end  of  a  reed  grass,  head  downwards, 
about  to  fall  into  the  abyss.  Jaratkaru  enquired  why 
they  were  lying  in  that  condition.  They  explained  that 
they  were  in  that  plight  because  their  descendant 
Jaratkaru  had  no  children.  As  he  is  a  bachelor  there 
is  no  hope  either,  of  his  having  any  issue.  Since  he 
has  no  children,  we  will  not  get  to  heaven,  they  added. 
To  save  the  Pitrs  from  their  predicament,  Jaratkaru 
decided  to  marry.  But  he  wished  to  marry  a  woman 
who  had  the  same  name  as  his.  Once  Vasuki  met 
Jaratkaru  and  told  him  that  he  had  a  sister  named 
Jaratkaru  and  that  he  would  be  very  happy  if  Jaratkaru 
married  her.  Jaratkaru  accepted  the  offer  readily  and 
married  Jaratkaru. 

After  their  marriage,  while  they  were  living  together 
in  a  place  called  Pus'cara  tlrtha,  an  unexpected  event 
happened  which  interrupted  the  happy  course  of  their 
life.  One  evening,  the  husband  was  sleeping  with  his 
head  in  the  wife's  lap,  under  a  tree.  The  sun  was  about 
to  set.  As  the  Maharsi  did  not  wake  up  before  sunset,  the 
wife  became  anxious.  It  is  believed  that  he  who  does  not 
wake  up  before  sunrise  and  he  who  does  not  offer  pray- 
ers at  dusk  will  be  guilty  of  the  sin  of  Brahmahatya  (kill- 
ing a  Brahmin) .  Nor  was  it  proper  to  wake  him  up  from 
a  sound  sleep.  But  in  the  end,  she  did  wake  him  up. 
The  husband  sprang  up  in  great  fury.  He  renounced 
the  wife  then  and  there.  Weeping  bitterly,  she  begged 
for  his  forgiveness.  At  last  Jaratkaru  relented  and 
told  her  :  "You  will  have  a  very  noble,  brilliant,  re- 
nowned, virtuous,  scholarly  and  devout  son  who  will  be 
a  devotee  of  Visnu  and  a  preserver  of  the  family". 
After  this  ManasadevI  set  out  to  Kailasa.  When  she 
reached  there  Parami-Siva  and  Parvati  comforted  her. 
ManasadevI  was  pregnant.  The  precepts  and  spiritual 
advice  given  by  Jaratkaru,  Parama-Siva  and  Parvati 
were  haard  by  the  child  in  the  wjmb  and  so  even  before 
his  birth  he  became  a  Jftanl  and  a  yogi.  In  due  course 

Manasadevi  gave  birth  to  a  son  who  was  a  part  of 
Narayana  (Visnu).  Since  he  was  the  son  of  Manasa- 
devI who  had  deep  devotion  to  the  Guru  and  to  the 
Gods,  the  boy  was  named  Aulka. 

The  Mahabharata,  Adi  Pat  va,  gives  another  reason  for 
giving  this  name  to  the  boy.  When  the  sage  Jaratkaru 
abandoned  his  wife,  he  had  blessed  her  saying  that  the 
child  in  her  womb  would  be  a  brilliant  and  devoted 
son.  That  is  why  this  boy  came  to  be  called  Astika. 

2)  Boyhood    Astika   was    taught   Veda,    Vedarhgas  etc. 
by  Parama-Siva  himself.  After  receiving    the    blessings 
of  Parama-Siva,  Astika  went   to  Puskara  tlrtha  and  did 
tapas  to  Visnu  for  many  years.  Having  received  Visnu's 
blessings  also,  he  returned  to  Kailasa.  After  living  there 
happily  with  his  mother  for  some  time,  one   day    they 
started     to    the  Asrama    of    Kasyapa   Prajapati,    the 
father  of  ManasadevI.  Kasyapa  was  very  much  pleased 
to   see    his    noble-hearted    daughter   and  her  brilliant 
son.     To    enhance    the  fame    and  accomplishments  of 
the  boy  Kas/apa  gave  a  sumptuous    feast  to  ten  crores 
of  Brahmins.   (Devi  Bhagavata,  Navama    Skandha) . 
Vasuki    was    Manasadevi's  brother.     Astika    grew  up 
there  under  the  care  of  Vasuki.  It  was  Cyavana  Muni 
who  taught  Samgavedas  to  Astika,  at  this  time.  (M.B., 
Adi  Parva,  Chapter  48,  Verse  18). 

3)  Astika  at  the  Sarpasatra.     Once    King    Parlksit,    the 
son  of  Abhimanyu  was  travelling  through  the   forest  for 
hunting  animals.  He  picked  up  a  dead  snake  with  the 
tip    of  his    bow    and  put    it  on  the  shoulder  of  a  sage 
named   "Samika".  Samlka's    son,  Srrhgi  came  to  know 
of  this.    In    his    anger,  Srrhgi  pronounced  a  curse  that 
King  Parlksit  should  die  within  seven  days  by  the  bite 
of  Taksaka.    When   Parlksit  heard  of  this,  he    had  a 
palace   built    on    a    single  pillar    in  the  middle  of  the 
ocean,  quite  inaccessible  to  Taksaka  and    took    shelter 
there.  The    most  famous  physicians  and  wizards  were 
engaged  to  ward  off  the  approach    of  Taksaka  to  that 
place.     Six  days    passed  like  this.  On  the  seventh  day, 
determined  to  make  a  final  attempt,  Taksaka  disguised 
himself  as  an  old  Brahmana  and  set  out  to  the    King's 
place  of  shelter.  On  his  way  he  met   Dhanvantari  who 
was    proceeding    to  Parlksit  to  protect    him.  They  be- 
came friends  and  as  a  result  of  it,  Dhanvantari  returned 
after     receiving  a  large  number  of  rare  precious  stones 
given  to  him  by  Taksaka.  Assuming  the  form  of  a  small 
worm,  Taksaka  secretly  entered  into  a  fruit  which   was 
to  be  presented  to  the  King.  As  soon  as  the  King   took 
that    fruit   in    his   hand,  Taksaka    took  his  own  shape 
and   size    and    bit    the    King  who    died  immediately. 
Janamejaya  was  the  son  of  this  King  Parlksit. 
Janamejaya   performed   all  the  obsequies  of  his  father. 

After  that,  in  a  spirit  of  revenge,  with  the  object  of 
annihilating  the  whole  race  of  serpents,  he  summoned 
Brahmanas  to  conduct  a  sarpa  satra  (snake  sacrifice). 
In  the  sacrificial  fire  specially  prepared  at  that  yaga, 
many  serpents  were  being  burnt  up.  It  seemed  that  the 
whole  race  of  serpents  would  shortly  be  wiped  out. 
But  Taksaka  alone  was  not  to  be  seen.  The  officiating 
priests  were  beginning  to  get  angry.  Impatient  cries 
of  Where  is  Taksaka  rent  the  air.  The  frightened 
Taksaka  fled  for  life  to  the  palace  of  his  friend  Indra 
and  there  lay  down,  curling  round  Indra's  cot.  When 
the  priests  understood  this  they  decided  to  use  their 
charms  and  mantras  which  would  bring  Indra,  his  bed, 
cot  and  all,  along  with  Taksaka  to  the  sacrificial  fire. 


At  this  stage,  all  the  gods  rushed  to  Manasadevi  and 
fell  at  her  feet  and  begged  her  to  save  the  situation. 
The  kindheartcd  Devi  called  her  son  Astlka  and  advis- 
ed him  to  persuade  Janamejaya  to  stop  the  sarpa- 
satra.  Astlka  went  to  Janamejaya  and  requested  him 
to  give  him  the  lives  of  Taksaka  and  Indra  as  a  gift. 
Janamejaya,  after  consulting  the  munis  and  priests 
and  at  their  advice,  agreed  to  do  so.  In  this  way,  the 
Sarpasatra  was  stopped  and  the  remaining  serpents 
escaped  with  their  lives.  (Devi  Bhagavata,  Navama 
Skandha,  M.B.,  Adi  Parva). 
ASTlKA  PARVA.  One  of  the  Parvas  in  the  Maha- 

bharata.   See  Mahabharata. 

ASURAM.     A  form  of  marriage.  (See  VIVAHA). 
ASURAYA>TA.  A  son  of  Visvamitra.   (M.B.,  Anusasana 

Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  56) . 

ASURI.  An  ancient  Maharsi.  He  was  the  acarya  of 
Kapila  Samkhyadarsana  and  the  guru  of  the  maharsi 
Pancasikha.  Once  Asuri  had  a  full  vision  of  God.  He 
gave  many  precepts  on  spiritual  matters  to  other 
Maharsis.  The  Bhagavata  says  that  Asuri  received  his 
spiritual  enlightenment  from  his  wife,  Kapila.  (M.B., 
Sand  Parva,  Chapter  218,  Verses  10-14). 
ASVALAYANA  I.  A  son  of  Visvamitra.  (M.B.,  Anu- 
sasana Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  54) . 

ASVALAYANA  II.  An  Acarya.  He  was  a  disciple  of 
Saunaka.  Asvalayana  composed  three  famous  works  : 
Asvalayana  Grhyasutra,  Asvalayana  Srautasutia 
and  Asvalayana  Stuti. 

ATAK.A.  A  serpent  born  of  the  Kaurava  dynasty.  This 
serpent  was  burnt  at  the  Sarpasatra  of  Janamejaya. 
(Sloka  12,  Chapter  57,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) 
ATAVlPURI.  An  ancient  city  in  India,  Sahadeva  con- 
quered this  city.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  31, 
Verse  72). 

ATHARVAVA.  A  sage.  When  Arjuna  dreamed  of  go- 
ing to  Siva  accompanied  by  Ki'sna  they  visited  in  the 
dream  the  asVama  of  this  sage  also. 
ATMADEVA.  See  under  Gokarna. 
ATREYA.  A  sage.  This  sage  had  acquired  the  power 
to  go  from  one  planet  to  another.  Once  this  rsi  went 
to  devaloka  as  the  guest  of  Indra  and  there  he  drank 
Amrta  (the  celestial  elixir)  and  enjoyed  the  dances  of 
the  celestial  maidens  A  desire  to  have  a  similar  heaven 
of  his  own  budded  in  his  mind  and  he  approached 
Visvakarma  who  gave  him  a  new  heaven  of  his  own. 
But  before  long  the  demons  took  over  this  heaven 
from  him.  Though  Visvakarma  took  back  the  same 
from  the  demons,  Atreya  did  not  go  back  but  returned 
to  his  old  asrama  on  the  banks  of  Gomati  and  doing 
penance  there  for  a  long  time  attained  salvation 
(Brahma  Purana). 

More  details.     Atreya   was     also     present    among     the 
ascetics  who  assembled  at  the  sarpasatra  of  Janameiaya 
(Sloka  8,  Chapter  55   Adi  Parva,  M.B.).    ' 

2)  Atreya  was  a  disciple  of  Vamadeva.  (Sloka  6,  Chan- 
ter 192,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

3)  This  rsi  taught  his  disciples  about    Nirgunabrahma. 
Sloka  7,  Chapter  137,  Anusasana  Parva,  M.B.). 

ATREYA(M).     A  place  of  ancient  Bharata.   (Sloka  68 
Chapter  9,  Bhisma  Parva,  M.B.). 

ATREYl  I.  Wife  of  King  Cm.  Svayambhuva  Manu 
got  of  his  wife  Satarupa  two  sons,  Priyavrata  and  Uttana- 
pada.  Uttanapada  got  a  son  named  Uttatna  of  Suruci 
and  one  of  name  Dhruva  of  Sumti.  Dhruva  got  three 



sons,  Sis{i,  Bhava  and  Sambhu.  Sisti  got  five  sons,  Ripu 
Ripunjaya,  Sipra,  Vi'kala  and  Vrkatejas.  Caksusa  was, 
born  to  Ripu  of  his  wife  Brhati.  Manu  was  born  to 
Caksusa  of  his  wife  Vlram.  Urn  was  the  son  of  Manu. 
Uru  got  of  Atreyi  Aiiga,  Sumanas,  Svati,  Kratu, 
Aiigiras  and  Gaya.  (Chapter  18,  Agni  Purana). 
ATRliYl  II.  A  river.  (Sloka  22,  Chapter  9,  Sabha 

Parva,  M.B.) . 
ATREYl    III.     Anasuya,    wife    of    Atri    is    also    called 


ATREYl  IV.  Daughter  of  Maharsi  Atri.  She  was  married 
to  Ahgiras,  son  of  Agni.  Aiigiras  always  spoke  rudely  to 
her  and  pained  at  this  she  once  approached  her  father 
and  told  him  about  this.  Her  father  told  her  thus  : 
"Your  husband  is  the  son  of  Agni.  That  is  why  he 
appears  unbearable  to  you.  Therefore  give  him  a  cold 
bath  always  and  he  wo_uld  gradually  become  mild." 
Hearing  this  the  devout  Atreyi  transformed  herself  into 
a  river  and  started  to  cool  him  down  by  constant 
showers.  This  river  later  on  became  the  famous  Parusni 
_  Nadl.  (Brahmanda  Purana) . 
AVAHA.  A  Vayu.  (M.B'.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  328 

Verse  37) . 

AVANTIKA.     Daughter  of  Yaugandhariyana,  a    famous 
character  in  the  story  of  Udayana.    (See  under  Yau^an- 
dharayana ) . 
AVARAyA.     A  King  of  Visvakarma's  dynasty. 

Genealogy.  From  Visnu  were  born  in  the  following 
order  :  Brahma  -  Dharma  -  Prabhasa-VisVakarma-Priya- 
Bharata  married  the  world-beauty,  Pancajanl.  Five 
children,  Sumati,  Rastrabhrt,  Sudarsana,  Avarana,  and 
Dhiimraketu  were  born  to  her.  (Bhagavata,  Dasama 
Skandha) . 

AVARTANANDA.     A  sacred  Tlrtha.  One  who  bathes  in 
this  tirtha  will  be  able  to    enjoy    life  in    Nandanavana. 
(M.B.,  Anuslsana  Parva,  Chapter  25,  Verse  45). 
AVASlRA.     A  place  in    ancient    India.    It   is    said    that 
Kama    conquered    this    place.     (M.B.,    Vana    Parva 
Chapter  254,  Verse  9) . 
AVASTHYA.     An    Agni.    (M.B.,    Vana    Parva,  Chapter 

221,  Verse  5). 
AVIRHOTRA.     A  king  of  Visvakarma's  dynasty. 

Genealogy.  From  Visnu  were  descended  in  the  following 
order  :  Brahma  -  Dharma-Prabhasa-Visvakarma-Barhis- 
Jayanti,  Rsabha's  wife  bore  to  him  twenty  children  who 
were  :  Bharata,  Kuslvarta,  Ilavarta,  Brahmavarta, 
Aryavarta,  Malaya,  Ketu,  Bhadrasena,  Indrasprk, 
Vidarbha,  Klkata,  Kavi,  Hari,  Antarlksa,  Prabuddha, 
Pippalayana,  Avirhotra,  Dramida,  Camasa  and  Kara- 
bhajana.  The  eldest  of  them,  Bharata,  became  the  ruler 
of  India.  From  him  this  country  came  to  be  called 
'BHARATA".  All  the  younger  brothers  ruled  over  the 
_  different  parts  of  this  country. 

AYATI.  A  daughter  of  Mahameru.  Two  daughters  were 
born  to  Mahameru,  Ayati  and  Niyati.  Ayati  was  married 
by  Dhatl  and  Niyati  by  Vidhata.  Dhata  and  Vidhata 
are  the  two  sons  born  to  Bhrgu  Maharsi  of  his  wife 
Khyfiti.  Dhata  got  a  son,  Prana,  of  Ayati  and  Vidhata, 
a  son,  Mrkandu  of  Niyati.  Prfna  got 'a  son  Dyutiman 
and  he  got  a  ton  Rajavan.  (Chapter  10,  Arhsam  1 ,  Visnu 

AYAVASA.  A  King.  There  is  mention  about  this  king 
in  Sakta  128,  Mandala  1  of  the  Rgveda. 


AYOGAVA.  A  special  caste  of  people.  Their  profession 
was  drama  acting.  They  were  adepts  in  handicrafts.  See 
under  Caturvarnyam.  (Chapter  151,  Agni  Purana). 

AYODHADHAUMYA.     See  under   Ayodhadhaumya. 

AYRAjAS.  Name  of  a  class  of  Kings.  Till  the  beginning 
of  the  10th  century  A.D.  Ayrajas  were  a  prominent 
political  force  in  Kerala.  They  ruled  over  a  huge  area  in 
S.  Kerala  (S.  Travancore)  till  the  time  of  the  Venad 
dynasty  coming  into  power. 

AYUDHA  PAR  IKS  A.  A  test  in  the  skill  of  archery  was 
conducted  when  the  Pandavas  and  Kauravas  finished 
their  study  at  the  feet  of  Dronacarya.  This  is  described 
beautifully  in  Chapter  134  of  adi  Parva,  M.B. 

AYURVEDA.  It  is  the  science  which  the  sage  Dhan- 
vantari  taught  SuSruta.  This  describes  all  the  diseases 
and  the  treatment  meant  for  them.  Ailments  are  of  four 
kinds  :  Saririka  refers  to  fever,  skin  diseases  etc.,  Mana- 
sika  refers  to  those  arising  out  of  anger  ;  Agantuka 
refers  to  cuts  wounds  and  injuries,  and  Sahaja  refers  to 
hunger,  thirst,  old  age,  etc.  (Chapters  279  to  286,  Agni 
Purana).  Refer  Dhanvantari  for  more  details. 
AYUS  I.  Son  of  Pururavas  and  father  of  Nahusa. 

1 )  Genealogy.     Descending  in  order  from  Visnu  Brahma- 

Ayus  was  born  to  Pururavas  of  Urvasl.  To  Ayus  was 
born  of  his  wife  Svarbhanavi  Nahusa.  (Sloka  24,  Chapter 
7,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

2)  Birth  of  the  son.     See  under  Nahusa. 

3)  Other  details.     Ayus  was  a    king   who    had  acquired 
great  power  by  penance.  (Sloka  15,  Chapter  296,  Santi 
Parva,  M.B. ). 

AYUS  II.  One  who  was  the  king  of  frogs.  SuSobhana 
was  the  daughter  of  this  frog-king.  Susobhana  was 
married  to  King  Pariksit.  For  the  interesting  story  of 
the  marriage  of  a  king  with  a  frog  see  under  Pariksit  II. 

AYUSMAN.  KaSyapa,  son  of  Marici,  got  two  sons, 
Hiranyaksa  and  Hiranyakasipu  and  a  daughter  Simhika, 
of  his  wife  Diti.  Simhika  became  the  wife  of  Vipracitti. 
Of  her  were  born  the  celebrated  asuras,  Sairhhikeyas, 
of  which  Rahu  was  one.  HiranyakaSipu  had  four  brave 
sons,  Anuvrata,  Vrata,  Prahlada  and  Sarhhrada.  Of 
these  Vrata  got  a  son  Vrata,  Samhrada  got  Ayusman, 
Sibi,  and  Baskala  and  Prahlada  got  a  son,  Virocana. 
Mahabali  was  the  son  of  Virocana.  (Chapter  19,  Agni 


BABHRAVYA.  An  author  of  the  'Science  of  Love'. 
Svetaketu  was  the  first  of  the  authors  who  had  written 
on  the  Science  of  amour  (Kama-Sistra).  Babhravya 
made  only  a  condensation  of  the  work  ofSvetaketu. 

BABHRAVYAM.  A  clan  or  gotra  of  Brahmanas  in 
Ancient  India.  It  is  mentioned  in  Mahabharata,  Santi 
Parva,  Chapter  342,  Stanza  103  that  the  hermit  Galava 
belonged  to  this  clan. 

BABHRU  I.  A  maharsi  of  the  line  of  preceptors  from 
Vyasa.  (See  Guruparampara). 

BABHRU  II.  A  Yadava  of  the  Vrsni  dynasty.  He  was 
one  of  the  ablest  of  Yadava  warriors.  (Chapter  14, 
Daksinatya  Patham,  M.B.).  Even  in  his  old  age  he 
used  to  do  penance.  SiSupala  carried  away  his  wife  when 
once  he  was  away  in  Dvaraka.  He  was  a  friend  of  Sri 
Krsna.  He  died  when  hit  by  an  arrow  from  Vyasa. 
(Chapter  4,  Mausala  Parva,  M.B.). 


BABHRU  III.  A  king  ofKaSi.  By  the  help  of  Sri  Krsna 
he  attained  Rljyalaksml.  (Chapter  28,  Udyoga  Parva, 

BABHRU  IV.  A  son  of  King  Virata.  (Sloka  33,  Chapter 
57,  Udyoga  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BABHRU  V.  One  of  the  sons  of  Visvamitra  who  were 
Brahmavadls.  (Sloka  50,  Chapter  4,  Anusasana  Parva. 

BABHRUDAIVAVRDHA.  A  Yadava  king.  The  informa- 
tion from  Puranas  available  about  him  is  given  below  : 

1)  This   Rajarsi    was   an  adept  in  the  art  of  yajna.  He 
was  a  disciple  of  Narada  and  Parvata   Maharsi.    (Aita- 
reya  Brahmana  7.34). 

2)  He  was  a  Yadava  of  the  Vrsni  dynasty  and  one  of  the 
seven  noted  ministers  of  the  Yadu  line  of  Kings.  (Sabha 
Parva,  M.B.). 

3)  At  the  time  of  the  kidnapping  of  Subhadra  Babhru- 
daivavrdha  was  partaking  in  a    grand    festival   at    the 
mountain  ofRaivataka.  (Chapter  211,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

4)  When  once  this  Rajarsi  went    on   a   visit  to  Krsna, 
SiSupala    carried    away  his   wife.    (Chapter    42,  Sabha 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

5)  When  in  the  end  theYadavas  in  Dvaraka  quarrelled 
with   each   other  and  were  destroyed,  the  plight  of  the 
Yadava    ladies     became    miserable.    Then    Sri    Krsna 
entrusted  Dvaraka  and  Babhrudaivavi'dha  with  the  task 
of  taking  care  of  them.  But  in  the    battle  of  the    maces 
he  was  killed  with  a  mace  thrown  at   him.    (Chapter  5, 
Mausala  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BABHRUMALI.     A  sage.  He  was  a  lively  member  of  the 

Sabha    of  Yudhisthira.    (Sloka    16,    Chapter  4,    Sabha 

Parva,  M.B.). 
BABHRUSETU.     A  Gandhara  king.  He  was  the  brother 

of  Druhyu  and  father  ofPurovasu.  (Chapter  277,  Agni 

Purana ) . 

BABHRUVAHANA.     A  son  of  Arjuna. 

1)  Birth.  When  the  Pandavas  were  residing  in  Indra- 
prastha  after  marrying  Pancali,  Narada  went  to  see 
th°m  once.  With  a  view  to  avoiding  any  quarrel  bet- 
ween the  Pandavas  over  the  one  wife  they  jointly  possess- 
ed, Narada  suggested  that  each  should  take  Pancali 
for  a  year  in  turn  and  he  who  violated  the  arrange- 
ment should  go  to  the  forest  for  a  year.  Once  Arjuna 
went  to  the  house  of  Yudhisthira  who  was  with  Pancali 
and  for  thus  violating  the  arrangement  Arjuna  had  to 
go  to  the  forest  for  a  year.  During  this  exile  while  he 
was  staying  at  Gangadvara  he  married  the  serpent  girl, 
Ulupi  and  got  a  son  called  Iravan  of  her. 
After  that  he  went  to  a  country  called  Manalur.  At 
that  time  that  country  was  being  ruled  by  a  king  called 
Citrangada.  Prabhanjana  one  of  the  forefathers  of 
Citrangada  had,  by  hard  penance  for  a  progeny,  acquir- 
ed from  Siva  a  boon  and  each  of  his  successors  got  a 
son  each  to  maintain  the  line.  But  when  it  came  to 
Citrangada  to  his  surprise  he  got  a  girl  instead  of  a  son. 
But  he  got  her  up  as  a  son  and  named  her  Citrangada. 
It  was  when  she  was  ready  for  marriage  that  Arjuna 
went  there.  The  king  received  Arjuna  with  respect  and 
after  enquiring  about  his  welfare  requested  him  to  marry 
his  daughter.  Arjuna  married  her  and  stayed  there  for 
three  months.  Leaving  that  place  Arjuna  went  to 
Pancatirtha  and  there  he  gave  salvation  to  the  celestial 
maidens  who  were  lying  in  the  tirthas  as  crocodiles. 
When  he  went  back  to  Manalur  Citrangada  had  deli- 
vered a  son  whom  he  named  Babhruvahana.  Promising 


them  that  he  would  take  them  later  to  Hastinapura,    he 
left  the  place. 

2)  His  fate  to  kill  his  own  father.  It  was  by  a  ruse  that 
Arjuna  made  Bhisma  fall.  Arjuna  put  Sikhandi  before 
his  chariot  and  Bhisma  refused  to  take  arms  against  a 
eunuch  and  accepted  defeat.  But  Gaiigadevi  witnessing 
the  battle  between  Bhisma,  her  son,  and  Arjuna  from 
above  could  not  bear  this  foul  play  and  so  cursed  that 
Arjuna  would  die  at  the  hands  of  his  son.  Ulupi  the 
serpent  wife  of  Arjuna  heard  this  curse  and  went  to  her 
father  Kauravya  who  in  turn  went  to  Gaiiga  and  begged 
for  a  relief  from  the  curse.  Gaiigadevi  then  said  that 
Arjuna  would  be  killed  by  Babhruvahana  but  would  be 
brought  to  life  by  Ulupi  by  placing  the  Mftasanjlvani 
stone  on  the  dead  man's  breast. 

3)  The  killing  of  Arjuna.  The  Mahabharata  battle  was 
over.  When  Yudhisthira  was  performing  the  Asvamedha 
yaga  Arjuna  conducted  a  victory  march  with  the  yaga 
horse.  On  his  way  he  reached  Manalur.  At  once  Ulupi 
called  Babhruvahana  and  asked  him  to  challenge  Arjuna. 
Babhruvahana  with  his  bow  and  arrows  attacked  Arjuna 
and  in  the  grim  battle  that  followed  Arjuna  fell  dead. 
Seeing  this  Citraiigada  came  to  the  place  of  battle 
weeping  and  abused  Ulupi  for  persuading  Babhruvahana 
to  kill  his  own  father.  Ulupi  immediately  went  to  the 
serpent  world  and  brought  the  Mrtasanjivani  stone  and 
as  she  placed  it  on  Arjuna's  breast  he  came  to  life  as  if 
waking  up  from  a  sleep.  When  he  saw  Citrarigada, 
Babhruvahana  and  Ulupi  he  smiled  and  asked  them 
why  they  had  all  come  there.  Ulupi  then  explained  to 
him  the  story  of  the  curse  and  extremely  pleased  over 
the  end  of  the  curse  Arjuna  took  them  all  to  Hastina- 
pura. (Chapters  218  to  210  of  Adi  Parva  and  Chapters 
79  to  82  of  Asvamedha  Pawa,  M.B.). 
4)  Other  details.  (1 )  On  reaching  Hastinapura  Sri  Krsna 
gave  Babhruvahana  as  a  present  a  chariot  drawn  by 
divine  horses.  (Sloka  6,  Chapter  88,  AsVamedha 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

(2)  The  diffeient  names  given  to  him  in  the  Puranas  are 
as  follows  :  Citrangadasuta,  Manippurpati,  Dhananjaya- 
suta  and  Manipuresvara. 

holy  place  in  the  Himalayas.  It  was  here  that  Nara  and 
Narayana  did  penance  for  thousands  of  years  and  the 
Puranas,  therefore,  give  it  a  very  prominent  place  in 

sacred  place  in  Kuruksetra.  If  one  lives  here  fasting  for 
twelve    years    eating    dates  only,    one    will  become  as 
great  as  Vasistha.  (Chapter  83,'Vana  Parva,  M.B.). 
BADARlVANA.     A  sacred  place.  ViSalapurl   an   ancient 
city  of  puranic  fame  is  near  this  place.     The  Badarik- 
asYama  comprises  Badarivana  and  Visalapurl  also. 
BADAVAGNI.     See  under  Aurva. 

BADHIRA.  A  serpent  of  the  Kasyapa  dynasty.  (There 
is  a  reference  to  this  serpent  in  Sloka  16,  Chapter  74, 
Udyoga  Parva.  M.B.) . 

BADULI.  A  son  of  Visvamitra.  He  was  a  follower  of 
the  Brahma  cult.  (M.B.,  AnuSasana  Parva,  Chapter  4, 
Stanza  53). 

BAHIRGIRI.  A  mountainous  region  of  ancient  Bharata. 
Mention  is  made  in  Mahabharata,  Sabha  Parva, 
Chapter  27,  Stanza  3  that  this  country  lying  in  the 
vicinity  of  the  Himalayas  had  been  conquered  by  Arjuna 
during  his  conquest  of  the  North, 


BAHU  I.  A  king  of  the  Surya-varhsa  (solar  dynasty) .  He 
was  the  father  of  Sagara.  He  is  known  by  the  name 
Subahualso.  This  king  was  once  defeated  in  a  battle  and 
being  weary  and  sad  he  entered  the  hermitage  of  Aurva. 
His  queen  was  given  poison  by  another  wife  of  the 
King.  But  the  child  in  her  womb  did  not  die.  The  queen 
wanted  to  jump  into  the  fire  in  which  the  body  of  her 
husband  was  to  be  burned.  But  Aurva  told  her  that  her 
son  would  become  a  famous  king  and  that  she  should 
not  commit  suicide.  Thus  she  desisted  from  committing 
suicide.  A  son  was  born  to  her.  As  she  had  been  poison- 
ed when  the  child  was  in  her  womb  the  son  was  given 
the  name  Sagara  (with  poison) .  It  is  said  in  Maha- 
bharata, Adi  Parva  that  this  prince  became  a  famous 
king  later. 

BAHU  II.     Mention    is  made    in  Mahabharata,  Udyoga 
Parva,  Chapter  4,  Stanza  22,  that  the  Pandava's  thought 
of  sending  an  invitation  to  a  king  named  Bahu  for   the 
battle  between  the  Kurus  and  themselves. 
BAHU  III.     A  king  of  the  Sundara  dynasty.    Mention   is 
made    about  this  king  in  Mahabharata,  Udyoga  Parva 
Chapter  74. 

BAHUBHA.RYATVA.  (Polygamy).  Polygamy  was  a 
custom  in  vogue  in  ancient  India.  It  was  not  prohibit- 
ed for  a  man  to  have  more  than  one  wife.  It  was 
customary  to  give  dowry  also.  It  is  said  in  the  Rgveda, 
Mandala  10,  Anuvaka  3,  Sukta  1 1  that  the  bride  should 
proceed  to  the  house  of  the  husband,  after  the  marriage. 
A  spell  (mantra)  meant  for  keeping  down  one's  co-wife, 
is  seen  in  the  Rgveda,  Mandala  10,  Anuvaka  11,  Sukta 
17.  It  is  a  prayer  to  destroy  the  love  of  husband  for  a 
co-wife  and  to  direct  that  love  towards  oneself.  The 
deity  of  this  spell  is  Indrani  the  wife  of  Indra  who  was 
a  polygamist.  In  those  days  marriage  was  an  essential 
duty.  Widow  marriage  was  not  forbidden. 
BAHUDA.  A  holy  bath.  If  one  stays  in  this  place  for  a 
night  in  celibacy  and  fast,  one  will  get  the  fruits  of 
performing  a  sacrifice  to  devas  (gods).  The  modern 
investigators  say  that  this  place  is  on  the  bank  of  river 
Dhavala  which  flows  near  Avadhi.  It  is  mentioned  in 
Mahabharata,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  23  that  the  hermit 
Likhita  had  recovered  his  lost  hand,  by  bathing  in  this 
holy  place  and  giving  oblations  to  his  ancestors. 
BAHUDAMA.  An  attendant  of  Subrahmanya.  (M.B., 

Salya  Parva,  Chapter  46,  Stanza  10). 
BAHUDANTAKA.  A  book  on  the  science  of  Ethics  (Niti- 
£astra) ,  the  work  of  Brahma.  It  contains  ten  thousand 
chapters.  This  book  was  abridged  into  five  thousand 
chapters  by  Purandara.  (M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  69, 
Stanza  83). 

BAHUDANTl.     Mother  of  Purandara  who  was  the  Indra 
during    the   Manvantara    (Period  of  a  Manu )  of  Manu 
Vaivasvata.  (See  the  word  Purandara). 
BAHUDASUYAS"  A.     The  wife  of  Pariksit,  a  King   of  the 
Kuru  dynasty.  A  son  named  Bhlmasena  was  born  to  her 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  95). 
BAHUGAVA.     A   king   born   of  the  family   of  Yayati. 

(Bhagavata,  Skandha  9 ) . 

BAHUKA  I.  A  serpent  born  in  the  family  of  Kauravya. 
This  snake  fell  in  the  sacrificial  fire  of  Janamejaya  and 
was  burnt  to  death.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  57, 
Stanza  13). 

BAHUKA  II.  The  pseudo-name  assumed  by  Nala  when 
he  was  living  in  the  palace  of  Rtuparna  in  disguise. 
For  further  information  see  the  word  Nala. 



BAHUKA  III.  A  mighty  hero  of  the  family  of  the 
\  rsiiis  About  this  Bahuka,  mention  is  made  in  Maha- 
bhafata,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  129,  Stanza  19. 

BAHULA  I.  A  river.  In  Mahabharata,  Bhisma  Parva, 
Chapter  9,  Stanza  29,  mention  is  made  about  this  river 
which  is  famous  in  the  Puranas. 

BAHULA  II.  An  attendant  of  Subrahmanya.  (M.B., 
Salya  Parva,  Chapter  46,  Stanza  3). 

BAHULA  HI.  Wife  of  Vidura  a  Brahmin,  who  frequented 
the  houses  of  harlots.  Bahula  was  in  the  habit  of  going 
to  the  temple  of  Gokarna  and  hear  Puranas,  after  the 
death  of  her  husband.  By  this  good  deed  Vidura  got 
deliverance  from  sin.  (Skanda  Purana  3.3.22). 

BAHULASVAN  1.  A  king  of  the  family  of  Sri  Rama. 
(Bhagavata,  Skandha  9) . 

BAHULASVAN  II.  A  king  of  Mithila.  He  was  god- 
fearing. Once  Sri  Krsna  visited  his  palace.  At  that  time 
he  received  much  good  advice  from  Sri  Krsna.  (Bhaga- 
vata, Skandha  10). 

B  \HUMULAKA.  A  serpent  born  to  Kasyapa  Prajapati 
of  his  wife  Kadru.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  35, 
Stan/a  16). 

BAHUPUTRA.  A  Prajapati  (creator) .  He  was  one  ot 
the  spiritual  sons  (Manasaputras)  of  Brahma.  (Vayu 
Purana  65:53). 

BAHUPUTR1KA.  An  attendant  (female)  oi  bubrah- 
manya.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  46,  Stanza  3) . 

BAHURATHA.  A  king  of  the  family  of  Bharata. 
(Bhagavata,  Skandha  9) . 

B  \HURDPA.  One  of  the  eleven  Rudras.  Eleven 
Rudras  were  born  to  Kasyapa  by  his  wife  Surabhi. 
Surabhi,  who  had  been  purified  by  Mahesvara  whom 
she  had  pleased  by  her  penance,  got  as  sons,  Aja, 
Ekapad,  Ahirbudhnya,  Tvastr  and  Rudra.The  renown- 
ed Visvarupa  was  the  son  of  Tvastr.  The  eleven 
Rudras  are  Kara,  Bahurupa,  Tryambaka,  Aparajita, 
Vrsakapi,  Sambhu,  Kapardin,  Raivata,  Mi'gavyadha, 
Sarpa  and  Kapalin  The  number  of  the  Rudras  is  one 
hundred  lakhs.  They  pervade  everything  moving  and 
not  moving.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  18). 

BAHUSALI.  A  prince  of  Avanti.  He  was  a  friend  ot  bri- 
datta.  (For  further  information  see  the  word  Sridatta) . 

BAHUSUVARYAKA.  An  ancient  city  on  the  bank  of 
the  Ganges.  (Kathasaritsagara) . 

BAHUVADYA.  A  country  in  ancient  India.  Mention 
is  made  about  this  country  in  Mahabharata,  Bhisma 
Parva,  Chapter  9,  Stanza  55. 

BAKU VIDHA.  A  king  of  the  family  of  Anga.  (Agni 
Purana,  Chapter  277). 

BAHUYOJANA.  An  attendant  of  Subrahmanya.  (M.B., 
'  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  46,  Stanza  9). 

BAHV\Sl.  One  of  the  hundred  sons  of  Dhr'tarastra.  It 
is  mentioned  in  Mahabharata,  Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter 
28  that  he  was  killed  by  Bhimasena  in  the  battle  oi 

B\HYAKAR""A.     A  serpent  born  to  Kasyapa  Prajapati 
'  of  his  wife,  Kadru.    (M.B.,  Adi    Parva,    Chapter    35, 
Stanza  9) . 


BAHYAKU.NDA.  A  serpent  born  in  the  family  of  Kas- 
yapa Prajapati.  Mention  is  made  about  this  serpent  in 
Mahabharata,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  103. 

BAHYASVAN.  A  king  of  the  Puru  dynasty.  He  was  the 
son  of  King  Purujati.  Five  sons  were  born  to  Bahyas- 
van  called  Mukula,  Srnjaya,  Brhadistha,  Yavinara  and 
Krtnila.  These  five  sons  became  famous  as  Pancalas. 
Of  these,  the  family  of  Mukula  became  the  Mauku- 
lyas,  who  were  having  temples  and  were  of  two  classes. 
A  son  named  Paftcasva  was  born  to  Mukula.  A  son 
named  Divodasa  and  a  daughter  named  Ahalya  were 
born  to  PancaSva.  Ahalya  got  with  child  from  the 
hermit  Saradvata  and  gave  birth  to  a  son  named  Sata- 
nanda.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  278) . 

BAKA.  Daughter  of'the  demon,  Sumali.  He  had  four 
daughters  :  Baka,  Puspotkata,  Kaikasi  and  Kumbhi- 
nadi.  Ravana  is  the  son  of  Kaikasi.  (Uttara  Rama- 
yana ) . 

BAKA  I.     A  demon.    The   Pandavas  escaping    from  the 
trap   of  Arakkilla  (lac-house)    through  a  secret  tunnel 
went   to    the   village     Ekacakra  on  the   banks   of  the 
river  Gaiiga  and  stayed  there  in  the  house  of  a  brahmin. 
Baka   was  a    demon    who  was    terrorising  the  villagers 
there.  He  used  to  come  to  the  village  freely  and    carry 
away  people  for  his  food.  Because  of  this  nobody   lived 
in  peace  and  so  they  all  joined   together    and   decided 
to  send  one  man  daily  with  plenty  of  other  eatables  to 
the   demon   in  this  cave.  Days   went  by  like  that  and 
one  day  the  turn  came  to  the  brahmin  who  was  shelter- 
ing   the    Pandavas.  That  brahmin  had  besides  his  wife 
one  son  and  a  daughter.  The  problem  arose  as  to  who 
should  go  to  the  demon.    The  father   was   willing    but 
the  wife  did  not  want   him  to  go  and  vice   versa.  The 
children    began    to   cry    and  hearing  the  noise  Kunti, 
mother   of  the   Pandavas,    went   there   to  enquire  and 
learned,  the  tragic  story  of  the  family.  She  immediately 
went   to  Bhima    and  acquainted  him  with  the  problem 
before  the  brahmin.  Bhima  at    once  volunteered  to  go 
to  the  demon  deciding  to    kill  the   man-eater  and  thus 
putting  an  end  to  his  depredations. 
Bhima  started  on  his  journey  to  the  demon    carrying  a 
cartload  of  rice  and  curry.  Deliberately  Bhima  arrived 
at    the  place   of  the  demon    very  late.  Baka    rolled  his 
eyes    in  anger    at    the    sight    of   the    late-comer.  But 
Bhima  without  heeding  him  sat  in  front  of  the   demon 
and  started  eating  the  rice    and   curry.  Baka    charged 
at  Bhima  with  fury  but   Bhima  defended  and  a  battle 
ensued  in    which    Baka  was  killed    and    he  fell    dead 
like  a  mountain-head  dropping  down.*  (Chapters  157- 
164,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BAKA  II.  A  demon.  As  young  boys  Sri  Krsna  and 
Balaramabhadra  were  once  playing  in  Ambadi  (Goku- 
la)  on  the  banks  of  the  river  Yamuna  when  (the 
demon,  Baka,  despatched  by  Kamsa,  went  to  them  in 
the  form  of  a  huge  terrible-looking  stork.  In  no  time 
opening  its  ferocious  beaks  the  stork  swallowed  Krsna. 
But  the  touch  of  Kr-sna  burnt  the  throat  of  the  bird 
and  vomitting  Ki'sna  the  bird  fell  dead. 

•Kirmtra    a  demon,  was  the  brother  of  Baka.  (Sloka  23,  Chapter  ,1,  Aranya  Parva,  M.B.). 

/It  is  in  the  ,oth  Skandha  of  Bhagavata  that  the  story  of  this  Baka   occur,.     But  in  the  vernacular  translate  of  the  same   the   story, 
not  so  clear.  Hence  the  original  in  Sanskrit  is  quoted  below  : 

Sa  vai  Bako  nama  mahanasuro  bakarupadnrk 
Agatya   sahasa  Krsnam    tiksnatundo    'grasadbah 
Krsnam  mahabakagrastarh  drstva  Ramadayo  'rbhakah 
Babhuvurindriyaniva  vina  pranam  vicetasah. 




BAKA  III.  (Bakadalbhya) .  The  great  sage  who  poured 
into  the  sacrificial  fire  the  country  of  King  Dhrtarastra. 
For  details  see  under  Dalbhya. 

BALA.     A   sacred  incantation.   (See  Atibala). 

BALA  I.  (VALA) .  A  demon  born  to  Kasyapa  Prajapati 
of  his  wife  Danayu.  This  demon  had  three  brothers: 
Viksara,  Vira  and  Vrtra.  It  was  this  Bala  who  later  on 
became  the  king  of  Pandyadesa.  (Sloka  42,  Chapter 
67,  Sloka  33;  Chapter  65',  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 
Chapter  168  of  Vana  Parva  states  that  this  Bala  was 
killed  by  Indra.  (For  details  see  Vala) . 

BALA  II.  A  deva  born  to  Varuna  of  his  elder  brother's 
wife.  (Sloka  52,  Chapter  66,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

BALA  III.  The  son  born  to  Parlksit  of  the  Iksvaku 
dynasty  of  the  daughter  of  MandukarSja.  This  Bala 
had  two  wives,  Sala  and  Dala.  (S'loka  38,  Chapter  192, 
Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BALA  IV.  A  monkey.  In  the  battle  with  Kumbhakarna 
this  monkey  did  many  brave  deeds.  (Sloka  6,  Chapter 
287,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BALA  V.  One  of  the  two  warriors  whom  Vayu  Bhagavan 
gave  as  a  gift  to  Subrahmanya.  The  name  of  the  other 
was  Atibala.  (Sloka  44,  Chapter  91,  Salya  Parva, 

BALA  VI.  A  Maharsi  of  ancient  Bharata.  He  was  the 
son  of  Maharsi  Arigiras.  (Sloka  27,  Chapter  208,  Santi 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

BALA  VII.  A  sanatana  Visvadeva.  (Sloka  30,  Chapter 
91,  Anusasana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BALA  VIII.  A  parsada  of  Visnu.  When  Vamana  trampl- 
ed over  the  head  of  emperor  Bali  and  sent  him  to 
the  underworld,  the  followers  of  Bali  ascended  the 
yajna  mandala  and  created  a  commotion.  Bala  was 
one  of  the  parsadas  who  then  came  to  the  scene  to 
quell  the  trouble.  (Astama  Skandha,  Bhagavata) . 

BALA  IX.  A  son  of  Mayasura.  He  lived  in  a  place  in 
the  netherlands  called  Atala.  He  created  ninetysix 
different  kinds  of  magic  and  gave  them  to  the  asura 
magicians  who  by  the  use  of  them  gave  the  devas 
immense  trouble. 

Once  when  Balasura  yawned  three  bad  women,  Svairim, 
KaminI  and  PumscalT  were  born.  They  had  with  them 
a  potable  substance  called  Hataka  which  they  gave  to 
men  whom  they  liked  and  after  enlivening  the  sex 
impulse  in  them  enjoyed  a  sexual  life  with  them  to 
their  heart's  content.  ( Pancama  Skandha,  Bhagavata) . 
Once  during  a  fight  between  Indra  and  Jalandhara 
Bala  defeated  Indra  in  a  pathetic  way.  Indra  then  sought 
refuge  in  him  and  praised  him  with  songs.  Flattered 
by  this  Bala  asked  Indra  to  ask  of  him  whatever  he 
wanted  and  the  sly  Indra  requested  for  the  physical 
body  of  Bala.  Without  the  least  hesitation  Bala  cut  his 
body  into  pieces  and  gave  him.  Indra  threw  away  the 
cut  pieces  to  different  sides  and  all  the  places  where 
these  pieces  fell  were  at  once  transformed  into  Diamond 

After  the  death  of  Balasura  his  wife  Prabhavati  went 
to  their  preceptor  (Kulaguru)  Sukracarya  and  told 
him  all  that  took  place  and  requested  to  bring  back  to 
life  her  lost  husband.  But  Sukracarya  regretted  that  he 
could  not  give  life  again  to  her  dead  husband  but  could 
by  his  powers  make  her  hear  his  voice  again.  Prabha- 
vati agreed  to  that  and  then  she  heard  her  husband  say 
"Leave  your  body  and  join  me".  Prabhavati  immediate- 
ly courted  death  and  joining  Bala  became  a  river. 
(Padma  Purana,  Uttara  Khanda,  Chapter  6). 

BALA(M).  To  know  what  are  Dasabalas  see  under 

BALABANDHU.  A  king  of  ancient  Bharata. _There  is  a 
reference  to  him  in  Sloka  236,  Chapter  1,  Adi  Tarva, 

BALABHADRA.  (Balabhadrarama,  Balarama,  Baladcva). 
The  elder  brother  of  Sri  Ki'sna  and  the  eighth  incarna- 
tion of  Mahavisnu.* 

1 )  Birth.     When  the  number  of  wicked  kings  increased 
BhiimidevI  (goddess  of  Earth)  turned  herself  into  a  cow 
and    took  refuge  in  Mahavisnu.  Mahavisnu    then  pro- 
mised to  be  born  as  the  sons  of  Vasudeva  named  Bala- 
bhadrarama   and    Sri   Krsna  and    destroy  the  wicked. 
Vasudeva   was  the  son  of  the  Yadava,    Surasena.  King 
of  Madhura.  To  Devaka  the  brother  of  another  Yadava 
King,    Ugrasena,    was ,  bdrn   a  daughter    Devaki.  The 
marriage  of  DevakI  with  Vasudeva  was  celebrated   but 
on    the   same  day  an  Asaririm  (a  heavenly   voice  from 
above)    said   that    the  eighth    child   of  DevakI  would 
kill  Kamsa.  Instantly  Karhsa  put  both    Vasudeva   and 
Devaki  in  jail.  The  first  six  sons  born    to   Devaki  were 
killed    the   moment    they   were  born  by    striking  them 
against    the   ground.  Devaki    became  pregnant  for  the 
seventh    time.    The  babe  in  the  womb    was  Ananta  in- 
carnate by  Visnu 's  directive  to  be  of  help  to  him  when 
he   would    also   be    born  soon  as   Krsna.    Therefore  it 
was   necessary  to    save  the  child  from    the  cruel  hands 
of  Karhsa  as  it  was  certain  he  would   kill  the    babe  the 
same   way   he   had  killed    all  the  others  before.    So  he 
ordered  Mayadevi  to  take  the  child  from  the    womb  of 
DevakI  and  place  it  in  that  of  RohinI,  another  wife   of 
Vasudeva.    Mayadevi  did  so  and  the  boy  got  the  name 
Samgharsana,    also   because  of  this.  The    news  spread 
that   DevakI  aborted.  RohinI  delivered    a  boy  and  was 
named  Samgharsana  alias  Balabhadrarama.    (Dasama 
Skandha,  Bhagavata) . 

2)  The   colour  of  Balarama  and  Sri  Krsna.     Sri   Krsna  is 
the  eighth  child  of  Devaki.  The  elder  brother  Balarama 
is  white  in  complexion  while  the  younger,  Sri  Krsna  is 
black  in  complexion.  There  is  a  story  behind  this.  The 
devas  decided  to  be  born  as  Gopalas  (shepherds)  in  the 
earth    to  be  of  help  to  Krsna  in  his  duty  of  killing  the 
wicked.  They    informed    Mahavisnu    of  their  decision 
and    the    Lord  was  immensely   pleased.   He    then  took 
one  white  hair  from  his  head  and  said  that  it  would  go 
to  Rohini's   womb   and    change   into    Balarama    and 

Tarn  talumulam  pradahantamagnivad 
Gopalasunum  pitaram  jagadguroh 
Gacchardda  sadyo  'tirusaksatam  Baka- 
Stundena  bantum  punarabhyapadyata 
Tamapatantam  sa  nigrhya  tundayor 
Dorbhyam  Bakam  Karhsasakbam  satam  patih. 
Pasyatsu  balesu  dadara  lilaya 
Mudavaho  viranavaddivaukasam. 

*c:n,  .  ,L    ,.P     ,.„  (Chapter  n,  Dasama  Skandha,  Bhagavata). 

with  that  of  Krsna  'bhadra  1S  so  mixed  with  that  of  Krsna  a  complete  life  story  of  Balarama  could  be  had  only  if  it  is  read  along 




taking  a  black  hair  said  that  it  would  go  into  Devaki's 
womb  and  change  into  Sri  Krsna.  It  was  thus  that 
Balabhadra  became  white  and  Sri  Krsna  black.  (Chap- 
ter 199,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

3)  Brothers.    Balabhadrarama  had  six  brothers  born  of 
his  mother   Rohi^I.  They  were :  Gada,   Sarana,   Durd- 
dama,  Vipula,  Dhruva,  and  Krta.    (Navama  Skandha, 
Bhagavata) . 

4)  Till   their  marriage  Sri  Krsna  spent  his  childhood 
in  Ariibadi  and  Balarama,  in  Madhura.  Once  the  sage 
Garga   went   to    the  house  of  Vasudeva  and  it  was  he 
who  then  told  the  story  behind  the  births  of  Balarama 
and  Krsna.    Hearing  this  Vasudeva  went   to  Madhura 
and  brought  Balabhadrarama  also  to   Ariibadi.  Garga- 
muni  then  performed  all  those  sacred  rites  which  were 
usually  done  to  boys  of  that  age  and  both  of  them  then 
remained  in  Ariibadi.  Several  important  events  happen- 
ed  during   their   stay  here,  notable  among  which  are : 
Putanamoksam    (killing    of  the   demoness    Putana  and 
giving  her   salvation).   Sakafasuravadha    (killing    the 
asura,    Saka(a),   Trnavarttavadha    (killing   the  asura, 
Trnavartta) ,      Vatsasuravadha       (killing    the     asura, 
Vatsa) ,  Bakavadha    ( killing   the  demon    bird,   Baka) , 
Aghasuravadha    (killing    the  asura,    Agha) ,  Dhenuka- 
suravadha  (killing  the  asura,  Dhenuka),  Kaliamardana 
(beating  the  snake,  Kalia)  and  Pralambavadha  (killing 

Pralamba).  (See  under  Krsna  for  more  details). 

Kariisa  conducted  a  Capapuja  (worship  of  the  bow)  to 
kill  Krsna.  It  was  on  a  festive  scale  and  both  Krsna  and 
Balarama  went  to  Madhura  to  attend  the  same.  There 
they  killed  Kariisa  and  after  that  went  to  the  aSrama 
of  Sandipani  Maharsi  for  education.  When  they  complet- 
ed their  education  they  at  the  request  of  the  preceptor 
gave  as  Gurudaksina  (The  fee  you  pay  in  the  end  for 
the  instructions  given)  the  lost  child  of  the  guru.  Then 
they  went  to  Madhura  and  there  several  events  took 
place,  important  among  which  was  the  fight  between 
Kfsna  and  Jarasandha.  By  this  time  the  Yadavas 
were  becoming  lean  financially  and  so  to  make  some 
money  Krsna  and  Rama  went  to  the  diamond-infested 
mountain  of  Gomantaka.  On  their  way  they  met 
ParaSurama  doing  penance  under  a  Banyan  tree.  On 
the  advice  of  Parasurama  they  killed  Srgalavasudeva 
and  got  immense  wealth.  On  their  return  Rama  and 
Ki'sna  along  with  many  Yadavas  went  and  settled  down 
in  the  island,  Dvaraka,  in  the  western  ocean.  (Dasama 
Skandha,  Bhagavata) . 

5 )  Marriage.  Before  the  advent  of  Balarama  and  Krsna 
the    island  Dvaraka  was  known  as   KuSasthall.   It  was 
ruled  over  by  a  famous  Rajarsi,  Revata.  This  king  was 
the    son  of  King  Anartta    and    grandson   of  emperor 
Saryati.  Revata  got  a  hundred  sons,    Kukudmin    being 
the  first  and  a  daughter  named   Revati.  When  the  time 
for  marriage  of  his  daughter  came  the  King  was  anxious 
to    find   out  a   fitting  husband   for  her  and  he  went  to 
Brahmaloka  to  take  the  advice  of  Brahma.  Revati    also 
accompanied  him.  There  stupefied  he  saw  Vedas,  Yajnas, 
mountains,  rivers,  oceans,    Rtus,  all   in   divine  figures 
standing  before  Brahma,  worshipping  him.    The  sweet 
celestial   songs    gave    them  both  untold  happiness.  He 
then  told  Brahma  the  purpose  of  his  visit  and   Brahma 
meditating  for  some  time  told  him  that  Balabhadrarama, 
son    of  Vasudeva,   was  the  only  one   person  suited  for 
her.     The   king   returned  to    Dvaraka   and  gave   his 

daughter  in  marriage  to  Balarama.  (Saptama  Skandha, 
Devi  Bhagavata) . 

6)  A  pilgrimage.     When  the   great   Pandava-Kaurava 
battle    started   Krsna  became  the  charioteer  of  Arjuna 
and  Balarama  went  to  the  forest,  Naimisa.    He  was  not 
much  interested  in  the  battle.  At  the  forest   of  Naimisa 
he  saw  Suta  telling  Puranic  stories  to  the  several  sages 
assembled  there  before  him.  Suta  did  not  rise  up  when 
he  saw   Balarama    and    the  latter  moved   to  anger  very 
soon  cut  off  the  head  of  Suta.  The  sages  assembled  there 
decried  the  act  of  Balarama  and  lamented  deeply  over 
the  incident.  At  this  Balarama  promised  that  he  would 
give  birth,  from  the  dead  body  of  Suta,  to  one  who  will 
be  well  versed  in  all  the  Vedas,  sastras  and  sciences.  The 
sages  then  blessed  Balarama. 

During  that  time  there  lived  in  the  vicinity  of  Naimisa 
forest  a  demon  called  Balvala  (Vatkala).  He  used  to 
annoy  the  sages  there  and  the  sages  requested  Bala- 
rama to  put  a  stop  to  the  atrocities  of  that  demon.  He 
immediately  killed  the  demon  by  his  weapon,  Hala, 
and  then  raised  from  the  dead  body  of  Suta  a  pandita 
of  great  erudition.  Later,  to  remedy  the  sin  of  killing 
Suta,  Balarama,  repentant,  visited  all  the  sacred  places 
in  Bharata.  Once  when  he  heard  about  the  grim  battle 
between  Duryodhana  and  Bhimasena,  he  went  to  the 
battle-field  and  tried  his  best  to  stop  the  war.  Dis- 
appointed he  returned  to  Dvaraka.  (Dasama  Skandha, 
Chapter  79,  Bhagavata) . 

7)  Death.     Once  the  rsis    Narada,  Kanva  and   Visva- 
mitra  came  to  Dvaraka.  To  make  fun  of  them  some  of 
the  Yadavas  dressed  a  Yadava  like  a  pregnant   woman 
and  producing  her  before  the   sages  asked    them   what 
child    she    would   deliver.    Enraged  at  this  the  munis 
said  in  one  voice  that  she  would  deliver  a  mace  and  that 
iron    mace    would    be    the    cause  of    the  end  of   all 

After  the  Mahabhiirata  battle  the  Yadava  dynasty  re- 
mained alive  only  for  thirtysix  years.  After  that  by 
the  curse  of  the  brahmin  the  Yadavas  were  all  killed  in 
a  drunken  brawl  between  themselves  in  the  very  pre- 
sence of  Krsna  and  Balabhadra.  This  happened  on  the 
shore  of  Prabhasa  tlrtha  and  Balarama  was  sitting 
there  then  in  deep  meditation.  Suddenly  the  soul  of 
Balarama  went  out  from  his  mouth  in  the  shape  of  a 
white  serpent  and  the  serpent  entering  the  nether  world 
was  given  a  warm  welcome  by  the  prominent  serpents 
there.  (Mausala  Parva,  M.B. ). 
8)  Other  details. 

(1)  It   was  Balabhadrarama  who  taught  Bhimasena  the 
mace-fight.  (Sloka  4,  Chapter  138,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

(2)  Balabhadrarama    was  present  along  with  Sri  Krsna 
at    the   marriage    of   Pancall.    (Sloka   1 7,  Chapter  185, 
Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

(3 )  Balabhadrarama  became    very    indignant  when  he 
heard  about  Arjuna  carrying  away  Subhadra  and  it  was 
Krsna  who  pacified  him.  (Chapter  22,  Adi  Parva,  M.B. ). 

(4)  He   was   present   at    the  marriage    of   Abhimanyu 
conducted  at  the  city  of  Upaplavya.  (Sloka  21,  Chapter 
72,  Virata  Parva,  M.B.) . 

(5 )  He  was  very  insistent  that  the  Panda vas  and  Kau- 
ravas   should    come    to    a    truce.   ( Chapter  2;    Udyoga 
Parva,  M.B.). 

(6)  He   witnessed  the  battle  of  maces  between  Duryo- 
dhana  and    Bhimasena    at    Kuruksetra.    (Chapter  34, 
Salya  Parva,  M.B.). 




(7)  Balarama  conducted  a  pilgrim  tour  and  visited  all 
the  holy  places  of  Bharata  at  a  time  when  the  Pandava- 
Kaurava  war  was  in  full  swing.  (Chapter,  35-54,   Salya 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

(8)  Balarama  was  of  opinion  that  it  was  unjust  ofBhima- 
sena    to  have  killed  Duryodhana  and  was  about    to   kill 
Bhimasena.   (Sloka  4,  Chapter  60,  Salya  Parva,  M.B.) . 

(9)  Once  Balarama  spoke  in  extolling  terms  about  the 
secrets   of  Dharma.     (Sloka  17,     Chapters    126,    Salya 
Parva,  M.B.). 

(10)  It  was  Balarama    who  performed  the  obsequies  of 
Abhimanyu.    (Sloka  6,  Chapter  62,  Asvamedha  Parva, 

(11)  He   went    to  Hastinapura  when  Yudhisthira  per- 
formed   the   Asvamedha  yaga.   (Sloka    4,    Chapter  66, 
Asvamedha  Parva,  M.B.) . 

(12)  Balarama    introduced  Prohibition    in    Dvaraka. 
(Sloka  29,  Chapter  1,  Mausala  Parva,  M.B.). 

(13)  Once  he  made  dry  the  river  Kalindi.  (See  Kalindi) . 
BALABHADRARAMA    II.      A     very    mighty    serpent. 

(Sloka  37,  Chapter  1,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

BALADA.  The  first  son  of  the  Agni,  Bhanu.  It  is  this 
Agni  which  gives  life  and  strength  to  all  living  beings. 
(Sloka  10,  Chapter  221,  Sand  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BALANDHARA.  A  daughter  of  the  king  of  Kasl.  Let 
the  mightiest  of  men  marry  her,  said  her  father.  Defeating 
all  the  kings  who  tried  to  take  her  Bhimasena  married 
her  and  SarvaSa  was  the  son  born  to  Bhimasena  of 
Balandhara.  (Sloka  70,  Chapter  95,  Asvamedha  Parva, 

BALADHI.  An  ancient  hermit.  He  was  powerful.  He 
performed  a  severe  penance  for  getting  sons.  The 
Devatas  appeared  and  granted  him  a  boon.  Accordingly 
a  son  called  Medhavin  was  born  to  him.  Once  Medhavin 
teased  the  great  hermit  Dhanusaksa,  who  cursed  him  to 
death.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  135). 

BALAHAKA  I.    (VALAHAKA) .     A    serpent    famous  in 
the  Puranas.  This  serpent  stays 
Varuna,      worshipping      him. 
Chapter  9,  Stanza  9) . 

dratha  the  King  of  Sindhu.  He 
kidnapping   Draupadi.    (M.B., 
265,  Stanza  12). 

BALAHAKA  III.  (VALAHAKA) .  A  famous  horse  yoked 
on  the  right  side  of  the  chariot  of  Sri  Krsna.  Mention 
is  made  about  this  horse  in  M.B.,  Virata  Parva,  Chapter 
45,  Stanza  23. 

BALAHAKA  IV.  A  king.  Once  Siva  gave  this  king  a 
vision  of  him  in  the  shape  of  a  cow-calf.  After  that  in 
the  place  where  Siva  appeared  as  calf  a  Sivalihga 
arose.  It  began  to  grow  to  the  extent  of  an  atom  daily. 
But  the  growth  ceased,  when  an  outcaste  who  became 
so  by  Karma  (action)  visited  it.  (Skandha  Purana 
3-2-27) . 

BALAKA  (VALAKA).  A  forester.  This  forester  used  to 
go  for  hunting  and  he  gave  everything  he  got  to  his  old 
parents  without  reserving  anything  for  himself.  One 
day  he  did  not  find  any  animal  even  though  he  had 
made  a  thorough  search  in  the  forest.  He  was  much 
worried.  At  last  he  reached  the  bank  of  a  river.  He 
saw  an  extraordinary  animal  drinking  water.  He  had 
never  seen  such  an  animal  before. 

the  durbar 
(M.B.,  Sabha 

hall   of 

.  A  brother  of  Jaya- 
helped  Jayadratha  in 
Vana  Parva,  Chapter 

It  was  a  peculiar  creature.  That  creature  had  done 
penance  before  Brahma,  from  its  young  age  with  the  view 
of  destroying  everything.  Brahma  appeared  before  the 
creature  and  granted  it  the  boon  that  it  would  have  the 
power  to  make  anything  blind.  Brahma  also  said  that 
anybody  who  killed  the  creature  would  be  given  a  place 
in  the  realm  of  Gods.  The  creature  had  been  wandering 
in  the  forest  making  blind  every  creature  it  met,  and 
one  day  it  was  drinking  water  and  it  was  then  that 
Valaka  shot  it  down.  As  soon  as  the  creature  fell  down 
the  gods  showered  flowers,  and  took  him  to  the  realm 
of  Gods  in  a  divine  chariot.  (M.B.,  Karna  Parva, 
Chapter  69) . 

near  the  mountain  of  Gandhamadana.  Those  who  bathe 
in  this  holy  bath  would  become  as  bright  and  famous  as 
devas  (gods)  It  is  mentioned  so  in  the  Mahabharata, 
Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  25,  Stanza  19. 

BALAKASVA.  (VALAKASVA).  He  is  the  grandson  of 
the  hermit  Jahnu  and  the  son  of  Aja  otherwise  called 
Sindhudvlpa.  Balakasva  had  a  son  called  Kusika.  (M.B., 
Santi  Parva,  Chapter  49,  Stanza  3) . 


1)  Origin.     Sixty  thousand  hermits  were  born  to  Kratu, 
one    of  the    Saptarsis    (seven    hermits),    by    his  wife, 
Santati.*    They  are  called    Balakhilyas.     Everyone   of 
them  was  only  the  size  of  half  a  thumb,  but    they  were 
as  bright  as  the  blazing  sun  and    had  attained   control 
over  their  senses.  (Visnu  Purana,  Amsa  1,  Chapter  10). 

2)  Garuda  (Eagle)  and  Bdlakhilya(s).  A    story  connect- 
ing the  birth    of  Garuda   with   Balakhilyas    occurs    in 
the  Puranas. 

Once  Kasyapa  Prajapati  performed  a  sacrifice  to 
obtain  children.  The  work  of  bringing  firewood  for 
the  sacrifice  was  entrusted  to  Indra  and  the  other 
devas  (Gods)  and  the  Balakhilyas.  When  Indra  was 
heaping  up  on  heaps  pieces  of  big  logs  the  Balakhilyas 
who  were  very  small  were  bringing  in  chips  of 
wood.  Seeing  this  Indra  laughed.  The  Balakhilyas 
got  angry  and  stopping  the  work  entrusted  to  them 
began  to  do  penance  with  a  view  to  create  an- 
other Indra.  Knowing  this  Indra  was  much  flurried. 
He  went  to  Kasyapa  and  told  him  everything.  Kasyapa 
went  to  the  Balakhilyas  and  pacified  them.  At  this  time 
Vinata,  a  wife  of  Kasyapa,  was  doing  penance  to 
obtain  a  son.  Kasyapa  said  that  the  penance  of  the 
Balakhilyas  would  not  be  fruitless  and  that  as  a  result 
of  their  penance  a  son  who  would  overpower  Indra 
would  be  born  to  Vinata.  Accordingly  a  son  was  born 
to  her.  Garuda  was  that  son.  The  fact  that  Garuda 
overthrew  Indra  when  he  went  to  heaven  for  ambrosia, 
is  well  known.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  31). 

3)  Routine  of  life.    The  Balakhilyas  live  in  themandala 
of  Surya  (solar  region).  They  travel  in  front  of  the  sun 
in  the  shape  of  birds.  They  wear  hides  of  animals.  They 
are  righteous  and  are  only  as  big  as  a  thumb.  They  are 
very  ardent  in  doing  the  works  of  devas    ( Gods) .   They 
are    sinless.    There    are  Balakhilyas  living  in  the  lunar 
region  also.  They  worship  the  Sun  daily.  All  the  world 
stand    firm    in    truth    because    of  the   penance  of  the 
Balakhilyas.  (M.B.,  Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  141.). 

*In  some  other  Puranas  the  mother  of  Balakhilyas  is  given  the  name  'Sannati'.   This  may  be  a  mistake  in  the  manuscript. 




4)  Other  information.  (1)  Garuda  (Eagle)  who  went 
to  the  realm  of  devas  (gods)  for  Amrta  (amb- 
rosia) took  rest  on  the  branch  of  a  banyan  tree,  and 
that  branch  was  broken  from  the  tree.  Sixty  thousand 
Balakhilyas  were  doing  penance  hanging  head  down- 
wards on  that  branch.  Garuda  knew  this  only  after  the 
branch  was  broken.  Feiring  the  curse  form  them  he  took 
the  branch  in  his  beak  and  flew  about  here  and  there. 
At  last,  according  to  the  advice  of  Kasyapa,  he  took  the 
branch  to  the  mount  Gandhamadana  and  without  caus- 
ing any  harm  to  the  small  hermits  placed  it  there 
(M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  30). 

(2)  When    Dusyanta  entered  the  hermitage  of  Kanva 
he  saw  the  Balakhilyas  doing    panance,  hanging  down 
on  the  trees  in    the  vicinity.    (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chap- 
ter 7). 

(3)  In   Valmlki  Ramayana,  Balakanda,  Sarga  51,   it 
is  mentioned  that    the   Balakhilyas    were    engaged   in 
prayer  and    meditations    and  offering  oblations  to  fire 
in  the  hermitage  of  Vasistha. 

(4)  It  is  mentioned  in  ValmTki  Ramayana,  Balakanda, 
Sarga   51,    that   in    the    period   of  the  Ramayana,  in 
South  India,  when  Ravana  was  going  to  the   house    of 
Maiica,  he  saw  the  Balakhilyas  doing  penance. 

(5)  The    Balakhilyas  learned    the   Vedas    and    Sastras 
(scriptures)    sitting    in  the  chariot  of  the  sun.  (Kampa 
Ramayana,  Parvakanda). 

BALAKHILYA  SA&HITA.  See  the  word  Guruparam- 

BALAKI.  (VALAKI) .  One  of  the  hundred  sons  of  Dh.'ta- 
rasfra.  Mention  is  made  in  the  Mahabharata  Adi 
Parva,  Chapter  185,  Stanza  2,  that  Valaki  had  been 
present  on  the  occasion  of  the  svayarhvara  (wedding) 
of  Draupadi. 

BALAKI.  A  hermit.  He  is  called  Gargya  also  as  he  is 
a  son  of  Garga.  He  acquired  much  knowledge  and  so 
he  became  arrogant.  Because  of  this  some  called  him 

Once  the  hermit  went  to  the  King  of  KasI  and  told  him 
that  he  would  impart  to  him  the  knowledge  of  Brahma. 
The  king  replied  that  he  would  give  thousand  cows  in 
return.  Balaki  declared  that  the  sun-god  was  Brahma. 
The  king  said  that  he  had  known  it.  Everything  that 
Balaki  said  had  been  known  to  the  king  earlier. 
So,  in  the  end  Balaki  had  to  become  the  disciple  of  the 
King.  Then  the  King  took  him  to  a  man  who  was  sleep- 
ing. The  King  called  the  sleeping  man.  But  he  did  not 
wake  up.  The  King  woke  him  up  and  then  asked  the 
hermit,  where  he  had  gone  when  he  was  sleeping.  Balaki 
could  not  say  where  men  go  when  they  are  sleeping 
and  where  they  return  from  when  they  wake  up.  The 
king  said  "In  our  sleep  we  attain  'Sarupya'  (assimila- 
tion to  god) .  But  we  are  not  aware  of  it.  Though 
we  get  eternal  bliss  we  do  not  know  it.  If  we  can  get 
eternal  bliss  when  we  keep  awake  that  is  'Atmajnana' 
(knowledge  of  Supreme  Soul) .  As  the  flames  emanate 
from  fire,  and  as  the  spider  weaves  its  net  and  sits  in  its 
centre,  the  soul  creates  everything,  controls  everything 

D  AT  P^rAvades  everything."  (Brhadaranyakopanisad) . 
D     j-          An   ancient   king    of    Bharata.    While    the 
Pandavaswere  living  incognito  in  the  kingdom  of  Virata 
Duryodhana   and  his  brothers  stole  the  cows  of  Virata 
in  consequence  of  which  there  was  a  battle.  The   devas 
(gods)  came  in  planes  to  see  the  fight   between  Arjuna 
and    the    teacher   Krpa.  It  is  mentioned  in  the  Maha- 

bharata, Virata  Parva,  Chapter  56,  that  the  King  Balaksa 
was  there  with  the  gods  when  they  came  to  see  the  fight. 

BALAMITRA.  A  king.  Satrughna  who  led  the  yaga 
horse  of  Sri  Rama  fought  with  Viramani  and  at  that 
time  Balamitra  fought  on  the  side  ofVIram'ani.  (Chapter 
40,  Patala  Khanda,  Padma  Purana) . 

15ALAMODAKA.  The  son  of  Suratha,  the  King  of 
Kundalanagarl.  (Padma  Purana,  Chapter  40). 

BALANlKA  (VALANlKA)  I.'  A  son  of  the  King 
Drupada.  Mention  is  made  in  Mahabharata,  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  156,  that  Asvatthama  killed  him  in  the 
battle  of  Kuruksetra. 

BALANlKA  (VALANlKA)  II.  A  brother  of  Matsya, 
the  King  of  Virata.  During  the  battle  of  Kuruksetra 
he  had  taken  the  side  of  the  Pandavas  and  had  fought 
against  the  Kauravas.  (M.B.,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter 

BALASVAMl.  A  warrior  of  Subrahmanya.  (M.B.,  <Jalya 
Parva,  Chapter  45,  Stanza  74) . 

BALAVATl.  The  daughter  of  hermit  Kanva.  She  did 
penance  to  please  the  Sun  to  obtain  a  husband  of  a 
very  good  nature.  The  Sun  appeared  before  her  and  gave 
her  some  dates  and  asked  her  to  prepare  food  with  them 
and  bring  them  back.  Balavati  began  to  cook  the  dates. 
Though  all  the  faggots  she  had  gathered  were  consumed 
it  was  not  properly  boiled.  As  there  was  no  more  fire- 
wood she  put  her  leg  into  the  oven.  Seeing  this  the  Sun- 
God  was  pleased  and  said  "All  your  wishes  will  be 
realized".  From  that  day  onwards  that  place  was  called 
by  the  name  'Balapa'.  (Padma  Purana,  Uttara Khanda 
Chapter  152). 

BALAVINASTAKA.  The  hero  of  a  story,  given  in  Katha- 
saritsagara,  Kathamukhalambaka,  Taraiiga  six,  to  show 
that  it  is  not  good  to  make  others  angry.  The  story  is 
as  follows  : — 

Long  ago  there  was  a  Brahmin  named  Rudra  Sarma. 
He  had  two  wives.  Both  gave  birth  to  a  son  each.  The 
elder  wife  died  and  her  son  also  was  brought  up  by  the 
younger  wife.  Being  jealous  she  fed  the  child  with  food 
too  hard  for  the  child  and  it  became  lean  with  stomach 
swollen  and  the  bones  projecting.  It  looked  an  uncouth 
figure.  Seeing  him  like  this  Rudra  Sarma  called  him  Bala- 
vinastaka  (one  who  is  lost  when  he  is  a  boy).  He 
gradually  grew  up.  When  he  was  only  five  years  old  he 
showed  extraordinary  intelligence.  One  day  he  decided 
to  teach  his  foster-mother  a  lesson.  On  that  day  he  was 
sitting  alone  on  the  lap  of  his  father.  He  said  to  his 
father,  "Father,  I  have  two  fathers".  Thenceforward  the 
father  began  to  doubt  his  wife,  that  she  was  having  a 
lover.  He  grew  jealous.  He  would  not  talk  to  her.  The  foster- 
mother  thought  Balavinastaka  was  the  cause  for  this 
change  in  her  husband's  behaviour.  One  day  she  called 
the  boy  to  her  mildly  and  asked  him  for  the  reason  for 
the  change  in  the  behaviour  of  his  father  towards  her. 
He  said  that  he  would  bring  about  a  change  in  the  beha- 
viour of  his  father  if  he  would  be  cared  for  properly. 
She  agreed.  Then  he  took  a  mirror  and  held  it  before 
his  father  and  when  the  reflection  of  his  father  fell  in 
the  mirror  he  said,  "Father,  I  have  two  fathers".  Imme- 
diately the  doubt  of  his  father  was  removed.  It  is  not 
right  to  make  even  a  boy  angry. 

BALAYANI.  An  acarya  (Teacher).  In  Bhagavata, 
S<andha  10,  it  is  seen  that  Balayani  was  taught  Bala- 
khilya  samhita  by  Baskala. 




BALAYOGl.  A  king  of  the  Anga  dynasty.  He  was  the 
son  of  Bali,  who  had  six  sons  named  Ariga,  Vahga, 
Kalhiga,  Pundra,  Baleya  and  Balayogi.  (Agni  Purana, 
Chapter  2 7 7)'. 

BALAYUS.  One  of  the  eight  sons  born  to  Pururavas  by 
Urvasi.  (Padma  Purana,  Si'sti,  Chapter  12). 

BALHlKA.  (BALHIKA)  I.  A  powerful  king  born  in 
the  family  of  Ahara.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  67, 
Stanza  25) . 

BALHlKA  II.  A  king  who  in  his  previous  life  was  the 
asura  called  Krodhavasa.  It  is  mentioned  in  Maha- 
bharata,  Drona  Parva,  Chapter  96,  Stanza  12,  that 
this  King  helped  the  Kauravas  in  the  battle  of  Kuruk- 

BALHlKA  III.  A  kingwhowas  the  third  son  of  Janame- 
jaya  and  the  grandson  of  King  Kuru.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  94,  Stanza  56). 

BALHlKA  IV.  A  son  of  Pratipa,  a  King  of  the  Kuru 
dynasty.  He  had  two  brothers,  Devapi  and  Santanu.  It 
is  said  in  Mahabharata,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  94  that 
Sunanda,  the  princess  of  the  country  of  Sibi  was  their 
mother.  Mention  is  made  in  Bhagavata,  Skandha  9, 
Chapter  22,  Stanza  18  that  this  king  Balhlka  had  a  son 
named  Somadatta.  Balhlka  was  a  friend  of  the  Kauravas 
and  the  Pandavas.  Balhika  exhorted  them  strongly,  not 
to  engage  in  a  battle.  Still,  when  the  battle  was  begun, 
Balhika  sided  with  the  Kauravas.  Balhika  was  once 
elected  as  the  general  of  eleven  divisions  of  the  army 
of  Duryodhana. 

The  achievements  ofBalhlka  in  the  battle  of  Kuruksetra 
are  given  below  : — 

1)  There   was    a    combat  on  the  first  day  of  the  battle 
between  Balhlka  and  Dhrstaketu.  (M.B.,  Bhlsma  Parva, 
Chapter  45,  Stanza  38) . 

2)  Bhimasena  defeated  Balhlka.  (M.B.,  Bhlsma  Parva, 
Chapter  104,  Stanza  26). 

3)  Fought  with  Drupada.  (Mahabharata,  Drona  Parva, 
Chapter  25,  Stanza  18). 

4)  Balhlka  fought  with  Sikhandl.  (Mahubhitrata,  Drona 
Parva,  Chapter  96,  Stanza  7) . 

5)  Bhimasena    killed   Balhika.  (Drona  Parva,  Chapter 
157,  Stanza  15). 

BALHlKA  V.     The    charioteer  of  Dharmaputra.   (M.B., 

Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  58,  Stanza  20). 
BALHlKADESA.     A  country  in  ancient  Bharata.  Mention 

is   made   about  this  country    in  Mahabharata,  Bhlsma 

Parva,  Chapter  9. 
BALI  (MAHABALI)  I.     An   emperor   of  the  Asuras.  He 

was  the  son  of  Virocana  and  the  grandson  of  Prahlada. 

1 )  Genealogy  and  Birth.     The  Asuras  or  the  Daityas  are 
the  sons  born,  of  his  wife  Diti,  to  Kasyapa  Prajapati,  son 
of  Marici    and   grandson    of    Brahma.    There  were   so 
many  Asuras    born  as  the  sons  of  Diti.  But  among  them 
Hiranyaksa,  Hiranyakasipu,    Surapadma,  Sirhhavaktra, 
Tarakasura   and   Gomukha  were   notorious.    Of    their 
sisters  Sirhhika  and  Ajamukhl  were  famous. 

Four  sons  called  Prahlada,  Sarhhrada,  Hrada  and 
Anuhrada  were  born  to  Hiranyakasipu.  Virocana  was 
the  son  of  Prahlada  and  Mahabali  was  the  son  of  Viro- 
cana. Bana  was  born  from  Mahabali  and  four  crores  of 
Asuras  called  Niviitakavacas  were  born  from  Bana. 

2)  The  churning  of  the  ocean.     Once  Mahlbali  had  stolen 
the   wealth   of  Devendra.  While  he  was  carrying   it  to 
his  .house,    it    all  fell  in  the  ocean.  Mahavisnu  ordered 
the    devas  (gods)  to  recover  the  lost    wealth    from   the 

ocean.  It  was  impossible  to  churn  the  ocean  without 
the  help  of  Mahabali.  So  the  devas  went  to  Mahabali 
and  sought  his  help.  Mahabali  agreed  to  help  them. 
The  real  aim  of  the  devas  was  not  to  regain  the  lost 
wealth  but  to  obtain  the  celestial  nectar  known  as  Nectar 
of  Immortality  (Amrta)  and  to  defeat  the  Asuras  in 
battle.  On  the  side  of  the  Asuras  there  was  the  know- 
ledge of  the  Mr tasafijivani  (life-restoring  remedy) .  So 
the  dead  were  being  brought  to  life.  But  it  was  not 
possible  for  devas  to  do  so.  It  was  to  make  up  this 
deficiency,  by  obtaining  Ambrosia  from  the  sea,  that 
the  devas  tried  to  churn  the  sea,  under  the  pretence  of 
recovering  the  lost  wealth.  Mention  is  made  in  the 
Visnu  Purana,  Arhsa  1,  Chapter  9  and  Matsya  Purana, 
Chapters  250  and  251  that  these  events  took  place 
during  the  regime  of  the  Indra  named  Mantradruma  in 
the  Caksusamanvantara  (the  period  of  the  manu  named 

3)  War  with  Indra.     The    great   teacher  Sukra    again 
anointed  Bali,  who  was  brought  to  life  again,  as  Indra. 
After  that  he  performed  the  sacrifice  of  Visvajit    (con- 
queror of  the    world)  on    behalf  of  Bali.  Assuming  the 
responsibilities    of   government,    Bali    performed    one 
hundred  Asvamcdha  yagas  (Horse  sacrifices)     (Bhaga- 
vata, Skandha  8) . 

After  the  Visvajit  sacrifice,  Yajnadeva  (god  of  sacrifice) 
who  was  greatly  pleased  at  the  sacrifice,  presented  Bali 
with  a  divine  chariot,  equal  in  all  aspects  to  that  of 
Indra,  a  golden  bow,  two  quivers,  which  would  never 
become  empty  and  a  divine  armour,  and  his  grand- 
father gave  him  a  garland  that  would  never  fade,  and 
the  teacher  Sukra  gave  him  a  divine  conch,  and  Brahma 
presented  a  garland.  (M.B.,  Santi  Parva,  Chapter  216) . 

4)  Attainment   of  the    Position  of  Indra.     Mahavisnu  had 
not  been    on    good    terms   with    the   devas,  for  a  time. 
Taking  this  opportunity,  Sukracarya  the  teacher  of  the 
Asuras,  persuaded  Bali    to  engage  the  devas  in  a  battle. 
Bali  defeated  the  devas  completely  in  a  pitched  battle. 
Thus    the   realm    of  the   gods  came  under  the  sway  of 
Mahabali.    Once,  during    that   period    Bali  invited  his 
grandfather  Prahlada  to  heaven  and  requested    him    to 
accept    the    most    honourable    seat     there.     Prahlada 
accepted  his  invitation  and  anointed  B^li  as  Indra.  Bali 
enquired  of  Prahlada  as  to  the  method  of  carrying  on 
the  government  of  heaven.  Prahlada  said  thus  in  reply: 
"Only  virtue  will  always  win.  Rule  the  kingdom  without 
deviating  from  virtue."  (Vamana  Purana,  Chapter  74). 
Because   Bali    had   ruled    his  kingdom  according  to  the 
advice    of   Prahlada,    he   became   famous    in  the  three 
worlds.  (Vamana  Purana,  Chapter  75) . 

According  to  the  version  of  Bhagavata,  Prahlada  when 
he  grew  old,  left  his  kingdom  in  the  hands  of  his  son 
Virocana  and  went  to  the  forest  for  penance.  Virocana 
was  not  as  famous  as  Prahlada.  After  the  period  of 
Virocana,  Mahabali  came  to  the  throne.  He  was  a 
mighty  king.  Within  a  short  time  he  became  the  emperor 
of  the  Asuras.  It  was  during  this  period  that  the  churn- 
ing of  the  Milk  Sea  took  place.  The  Asuras  and  the 
Devas  (gods)  sat  on  either  side  and  using  the  mount 
Mandara  as  churn-drill,  churned  the  Milk  Sea  and 
obtained  Amrta  (the  celestial  nectar  of  immortality). 
A  battle  took  place  between  the  Asuras  and  the  Devas 
for  the  possession  of  Amrtakalasa  (the  Ambrosia  and 
the  container)  and  the  emperor  Mahabali  was  killed  in 
the  battle.  The  Asuras  carried  the  dead  body  of  Maha. 




ball  to  his  capital,  where  Sukracarya  (their  teacher-pri- 
est Sukra)  brought  him  to  life  again  by  the  help  of  sacred 
herbs.  Mahabali  instantly  waged  another  war,  fiercer 
than  the  previous  ones,  with  the  devas,  and  having 
defeated  them,  he  drove  them  out  of  their  realm  and 
brought  it  under  control.  (Bhagavata,  Skandha  8). 

5)  The  curse  of  Prahldda.     As  the  whole  of  heaven  came 
under    the   sway    of  Bali,  the  devas  began  to  leave  the 
country  one  by  one.  Everybody  was  happy  and  comfort- 
able under  the  rule  of  Bali.      But  the   devas  and  Brah- 
manas were  denied    the    privileges  they  deserved.  They 
approached    Visnu    and  represented    their    grievances. 
Visnu  told  them  thus  :  "Bali  is  devoted  to  me.  Still,  to 
redress  your  grievances  I  shall  take    the  incarnation  of 
Vamana  shortly." 

In  course  of  time  the  Asuras  and  their  countries  began 
to  be  weakened.  Seeing  the  approach  of  destruction 
emperor  Bali  became  thoughtful.  He  approached 
Prahlada  to  learn  the  reason.  Prahlada  told  Bali  thus : 
"Lord  Visnu  is  now  staying  in  the  womb  of  Aditi  for  his 
incarnation  as  Vamana.  That  is  why  the  country  and 
the  Asuras  are  subjected  to  destruction.  Hearing  this 
Mahabali  said:  ''Our  Riiksasas  are  more  powerful 
than  that  Visnu."  Hearing  these  haughty  words  of 
Bali,  Prahlada  got  angry  and  cursed  Bali  ''Let  your 
country  be  destroyed."  Bali  requested  Prahlada  to 
pardon  him.  Prahlada  advised  Bali  "You  will  get  sal- 
vation only  by  relying  on  Visnu".  (Vamana  Purana  77) . 

6)  Defeated  by  Vamana.     The  defeated  devas  had  taken 
refuge    in    forests.  Aditi    the    mother  of  the  devas  was 
very    sorry  at  this.   She  shed  tears  before  her  husband 
Kasyapa  Prajapati,  who  advised  his  wife  to  take  a    fast 
of  twelve  days,  and  taught  her  the    rules  and  rituals  of 
the  fast.  Accordingly  she  took  the  fast,  Visnu  appeared 
before  her   and   asked  her  what  boon  she  wanted.  She 
requested  Visnu  to  take  birth  as  her  son,  to  drive  away 
Bali  and  to  restore  her  sons,  the  devas  (gods) ,  to    their 
kingdom  of  heaven.  Mahavisnu  agreed. 

Aditi  became  pregnant  and  gave  birth  to  the  son 
Vamana.  He  was  an  incarnation  of  Mahavisnu.  [The 
5th  incarnation  (avatara)  of  Visnu]. 
At  this  time  Mahabali  was  performing  a  sacrifice  on  the 
bank  of  the  river  Narmada.  Vamana  came  to  the  place  of 
sacrifice  in  the  dress  of  a  hermit  boy  and  told  Mahabali 
that  he  was  a  help  less  hermit  boy  and  requested  that 
he  might  be  given  three  steps  of  ground.  Mahabali 
was  pleased  with  the  boy  and  told  him  that  he  was 
willing  to  give  the  boy  even  the  country  called  Bhrnga- 
raka  and  that  he  was  prepared  to  forego  the  kingly 
pleasures  for  the  boy.  The  hermit  boy  did  not  show  any 
desire  for  them.  So  many  gathered  round  them  to 
witness  this  sight.  The  teacher  Sukracarya  called  Maha- 
bali and  said  that  the  boy  was  a  cheat  and  that  his 
request  should  not  be  granted.  But  Mahabali  decided 
to  grant  the  wish  of  the  boy  and  as  a  token  of  his  gift 
he  began  to  offer  the  boy  water  from  a  waterpot.  Then 
the  teacher  got  into  the  mouth  of  the  pot  in  the  shape 
of  a  mote  and  water  would  not  flow  freely  out  of  the 
mouth  of  the  pot.  Knowing  this  Vamana  took  a  grass 
of  Darbha  and  pushed  it  at  the  mouth  of  the  pot.  The 
grass  pierced  one  eye  of  Sukracarya.  From  that  time 
onwards  Sukracarya  had  only  one  eye.  Water  flowed 
freely  into  the  hands  of  Vamana.  Sukra  got  angry  and 
cursed  Bali.  Vamana  began  to  measure  the  ground 
and  simultaneously  began  to  grow.  The  asuras  who  were 

horrified  at  this,  began  to  attack  Vamana  with  anything 
they  could  lay  hands  on.  Still  Vamana  was  growing. 
Finally  he  became  an  immensely  large  being.  With 
one  step  he  measured  the  whole  of  earth  and  with  the 
second  step  he  took  the  whole  of  heaven.  Then  he 
asked  Bali,  where  to  place  the  third  step.  Mahabali 
said  that  he  had  only  his  body  left,  as  his  own,  and 
that  Vamana  might  take  it  and  complete  three  steps. 
Vamana  placed  his  foot  on  the  head  of  Bali  and  pushed 
him  down  to  Patala  (the  Netherworld) .  Thencefor- 
ward the  asuras  became  the  inhabitants  of  Patala. 
(Bhagavata,  Skandha  8). 

7)  Bali  and  Ravana.  Once  Ravana  visited  Bali  who 
was  under  custody  in  Patala,  and  said  to  him,  "I  have 
come  to  save  you  from  here.  So  get  yourself  free  from 
the  custody  of  Mahavisnu,  with  my  help."  Hearing 
this,  Bali  asked  Ravana  to  fetch  the  two  earrings  of 
Hiranyakaisipu,  which  were  shining  like  blazing  fire 
a  little  away  from  them.  Ravana  moved  forward  to 
take  them.  But  he  fell  unconscious.  Bali  caused  him  to 
recover  and  said:  "These  earrings  were  worn  by  my 
great  grandfather  Hiranyakasipu.  How  could  you, 
who  are  not  even  capable  of  taking  his  earrings,  save 
me  from  his  slayer,  Visnu?  Visnu  is  Almighty  and 
All-powerful  and  Supreme  Lord  of  everything."  Hear- 
ing this,  Ravana  was  filled  with  shame  and  he  returned. 
(Valmiki  Ramayana,  Uttara  Kanda,  Praksipta  Sarga) . 

8)  Bali  born  as  a  Gardabha  (Ass).    Bali,  who  was  fallen 
from   power   took    birth    in   the    womb  of  an   ass  and 
roamed    about.  Brahma  instructed     Indra  to  find   out 
Bali.    (M.B.,  Sand  Parva,  Chapters  216-218). 

9)  Other  information. 

(1)  Mahabali  shines  in  the  durbar  of  Varuna.    (M.B., 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Stanza  12). 

(2)  Once  Mahabali  went  to  Prahlada  and  repented  of 
his  sins  and  begged  for  pardon.  Then  he  began  to  make 
enquiries   on    spiritual  matters.     (M.B.,  Vana    Parva, 
Chapter  28,  Stanza  3) . 

(3)  From   his   childhood  Mahabali   was  a  hater  of  the 
Brahmanas.     (M.B.,    Santi  Parva,  Chapter  90,    Stanza 

(4)  Once  Mahabali   was  engaged  in    a  serious  contest 
with  Indra.  (M.B.,  Sand  Parva,  Chapter  223). 

(5)  After   having  lost   his  kingdom  Mahabali  ridiculed 
Indra    in   various    ways.   (M.B.,    Santi  Parva,  Chapter 
225,  Stanza  30) . 

(6)  Once   Mahabali     talked   with    Sukracarya    about 
giving    gifts   of  flower,  smoke    and  light.   (M.B.,  Anu- 
sasana  Parva,  Chapter  98,  Stanza    15). 

(7)  Laksml    Devi   had  forsaken    Mahabali  because  he 
behaved    haughtily  towards  Brahmanas.    (M.B.,    Santi 
Parva,  Chapters  216-218) . 

(8)  In   the    religious    Books  such  as  Yogavasistha  the 
story  of  Mahabali  is  given  to  illustrate   disinterestedness 

BALI  II.  A  hermit.  It  is  mentioned  in  the  Mahabharata, 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Stanza  10,  that  this  hermit 
lived  in  Hasdnapura. 

BALI  III.  An  incarnation  of  Siva.  Siva  incarnated  in 
the  hermitage  of  the  Balakhilyas  in  the  mount  of 
Gandhamadana  during  the  period  of  Varaha  Kalpa 
(Kalpa — one  day  of  Brahma  or  the  period  of  14 
manus) .  It  is  seen  in  Siva  Purana,  Satapatha  Brahmana 
that  Bali  had  four  sons,  called  Sudhama,  Kasyapa, 
Vasisjha  and  Virajas, 




BALI  IV.  A  king  of  the  Yadavas.  He  was  the  son  of 
Krtavarman.  Bali  married  Carumatl,  the  daughter  of 
Rukminl.  (Bhagavata,  Skandha  10). 

BALI  V.  A  famous  monkey-king  of  the  country  of  Anava. 
This  King  who  was  the  son  of  Sutapas  was  a  contem- 
porary of  the  great  King  Sagara. 

Bali  did  penance  and  Brahma  appeared  before  him, 
and  blessed  him  and  said,  "You  will  become  a  great 
sage  and  will  live  till  the  end  of  the  Kalpa  (a  period 
of  world  age).  Your  power  will  be  inimitable.  Nobody 
will  overthrow  you  in  battle.  You  will  be  loved  by 
your  subjects  and  they  will  obey  you.  You  will  be  well- 
versed  in  the  knowledge  of  law  and  its  observance  and 
the  learned  will  recognize  your  knowledge.  You  will 
re-establish  caste  system  in  your  kingdom.' '  (Harivarhia, 
1.  31.35.39). 

Sudesna  was  the  wife  of  Bali.  The  couple  had  no  children. 
At  last  they  appealed  to  Dlrghatamas  a  hermit,  from 
whom  they  got  five  sons  called  Ariga,  Variga,  Kalinga, 
Pandu  and  Suhma  (Brahma  Purana).  In  Bhagavata 
it  is  mentioned  that  he  had  one  more  son  called 

Bali  left  his  body  at  the  end  of  the  Kalpa  and  entered 
heaven.  Before  his  death  he  had  divided  his  kingdom 
equally  among  his  sons.  (Bhagavata,  Skandha  9,  Maha- 
bharata,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  92). 

BALI.     A  mighty  monkey-king. 

1 )  Birth.  Bali  is  the  son  of  Indra.  There  is  a  story 
about  the  birth  of  Bali  as  follows: — 
SllavatI  who  was  devoted  to  her  husband  once  carried 
her  husband  Ugratapas  who  was  a  leper,  on  her  shoul- 
der to  the  house  of  a  harlot  one  night.  On  the  way 
they  saw  the  hermit  Animandavya,  who  had  been 
placed  on  a  trident  by  the  order  of  the  King,  beating 
his  limbs  with  agony.  Lying  on  the  trident  he  saw 
Ugratapas.  Seeing  the  amorous  nature  of  Ugratapas 
Animandavya  cursed  him  that  before  sunrise  he  would 
die.  SilavatI  who  was  a  woman  of  great  purity  and 
loyalty  hearing  the  curse  said,  "Let  the  Sun  not  rise 

Next  day,  though  it  was  time  the  sun  did  not  rise.  The 
night  prolonged.  Aruna  the  charioteer  was  ready  at  the 
usual  time  but  saw  the  Sun  sitting  motionless.  Wast- 
ing time  was  intolerable  to  the  charioteer.  So  he  decid- 
ed to  make  the  best  use  of  the  time  at  his  disposal  by 
witnessing  a  little  of  the  dance  of  the  celestial  beauties 
in  the  realm  of  the  devas.  But  males  had  no  admittance 
there.  So  Aruna  took  the  shape  of  a  beautiful  woman 
and  got  in.  Seeing  a  new  person,  very  beautiful  to 
look  at,  sitting  in  the  midst  of  the  celestial  maids  Indra 
grew  amorous.  He  secretly  took  her  to  a  dark  place 
and  a  son  was  born  out  of  that  coition.  That  son  is  Bali. 
When  Aruna  returned  the  Sun  was  standing  full  of 
anger.  Being  afraid  of  him  Aruna  confessed  everything 
to  the  Sun.  When  he  heard  the  whole  story  the  Sun 
expressed  his  desire  to  see  that  figure  which  Aruna  had 
adopted.  Accordingly  Aruna  again  became  a  woman. 
The  Sun  also  had  coition  with  her  and  Sugriva  was 
the  son  born  out  of  this  coition.  Bali  and  Sugriva 
were  brought  up  by  AhalyadevI  in  the  hermitage  of 

At  that  time  a  monkey-king  named  Rksaraja  had  been 
ruling  over  the  forest  with  Kiskindha  as  his  capital. 
He  had  no  sons  and  so  he  approached  Indra  and  placed 
before  him  his  grievances.  Indra  brought  Bali  and 

Sugriva  from  the  hermitage  of  Gautama  and  handed 
them  over  to  Rksarajas.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva.  Chapter  107; 
Brahmanda  Purana,  Chapter  42;  Uttara  Ramayana 
and  Kampa  Ramayana,  Purvakanda). 

2 )  Marriage  and  Kingship.  Owing  to  difference  of  opini- 
on, Bali  defeated  the  asuras  who  came  for  the  churning 
of  the    Sea    of   Milk.  The   devas  who  were  pleased  at 
this,    gave   Bali,  a  woman   named  Tara,    derived  from 
the  Sea  of  Milk.  Thus  Tara  became  his  wife  and  he  got 
a  son  by  her,  named  Arigada  who  became  famous  as  a 
mighty  warrior-prince.  Sugriva  married  Ruma.  At  that 
time    Rksaraja    died  and  Bali  became  King.     (Kampa 
Ramayana,  Purvakanda). 

3)  Enmity  with  Hanuman.     It   was    during   this   period 
that  Hanuman  was  born.  While  Siva  and  ParvatI  were 
living  in  the  forest  as  monkeys    ParvatI  got  with  child. 
The   child   was  given  to  Bhagavan  Vayu  ( Wind-God ) 
with  the  womb.  Vayu  placed  the  womb  with  the  child 
in  Anjana  Devi's  stomach.  Narada  informed  Bali  all  these 
things.  Bali   thought   that  his  position  would  be  lost,  if 
a  being  born  of  Siva,  grew  up  in  the  form  of  a  monkey. 
In   accordance  with    the  advice  of  Narada,  Bali  melted 
Pancaloha  (Five  metals)  and  passed  it  into    the   womb 
of  Anjana.  Still  the  child  in  the  womb  was   not    killed 
as  it  was  the  sperm  of  Siva.  The  molten  metals  became 
earrings  of  the  child  in  the  womb.    (Kampa  Ramayana, 

4)  Sugriva  separated.     Once,  the  son    of  Maya,  the  car- 
penter   of    the  asuras,    wanted    to    defeat    Bali  by  a 
combat  or  cunning  sleights  as  he  was   an  expert  wrest- 
ler   and  magician.  He  came  to  Kiskindha  in  the  mid- 
night and  standing  before  the  palace,  challenged  Bali, 
who  getting  angry  came  out  followed  by  Sugriva.  See- 
ing  the  two  of  them  the  magician  began  to   run.  Bali 
and  Sugriva  chased  him  to  a  cave.  Placing  Sugriva   at 
the  mouth  of  the  cave  Bali  followed  the   magician.  Be- 
fore going,  Bali  said  to  Sugriva:  "Brother,  I  will  go  in 
and   kill  the  Magician  and  return.  Be    brave  and  stay 
here.  If  the  asura  dies  milk  will  appear  at  the  mouth 
of  the  cave  and  if  he  kills  me  blood  will  be  seen.  If  the 
latter  happens  close  the    mouth  of  the  cave    firmly  and 
return  to  Kiskindha  and  live  happily  there." 

Bali  did  not  return  even  after  a  year.  Finally  the  asura 
was  killed.  But  by  the  cunning  sleights  of  the  magician 
it  was  blood  that  appeared  at  the  mouth  of  the  cave. 
Thinking  that  his  brother  was  slain  by  the  magician 
Sugriva  felt  sorry.  Then  he  closed  the  mouth  of  the  cave 
firmly  with  stone  and  returned  to  Kiskindha.  Hearing 
about  the  death  of  Bali  the  monkeys  anointed  Sugriva 
as  King.  After  a  time  Bali  returned  stronger  than  before 
and  saw  the  mouth  of  the  cave  closed.  He  thought  that 
Sugriva  had  closed  the  mouth  of  the  cave  deliberately 
to  kill  him  and  to  usurp  his  throne.  Bali  reached 
Kiskindha  and  drove  Sugriva  away.  Sugriva  fled  to 
Mount  Rsyamukacala  which  was  prohibited  area  for 
Bali  due  to  a  curse.  Matanga  had  cursed  him  that  if 
he  entered  that  mountain  his  head  would  be  broken. 
So  Sugriva  was  safe  in  that  mountain. 
The  desire  of  Bali  to  take  revenge  on  Sugriva  increased 
everyday.  Everyday  he  used  to  go  to  the  four  sea- 
shores and  conduct  bath,  prayer,  meditation  etc.  and 
return  to  Kiskindha  within  a  short  time.  With  one 
jump  he  will  reach  one  place  from  another,  and  in 
each  jump  he  would  put  one  step  on  the  head  of 
Sugriva  in  the  RSyamukacala.  Hanuman  was  the 




minister  of  Sugrlva.  He  was  much  annoyed  at  this 
habitual  torture  of  Sugrlva.  One  day  as  usual  Bali 
was  stepping  on  the  head  of  Sugrlva  to  jump  to  another 
place,  when  Hanuman  caught  hold  of  Bali  by  his  waist. 
Hanuman  thought  that  if  Bali  was  dragged  down  on 
the  mountain  somehow  or  other,  his  head  would  break 
and  there  would  be  an  end  of  his  wicked  deeds.  Bali 
thought  that  if  he  could  jump  into  Kiskindha  with 
Hanuman  it  would  be  easy  for  him  to  destroy  Sugrlva. 
But  both  were  of  equal  strength.  So  Bali  did  not  jump 
with  Hanuman  to  Kiskindha  and  Hanuman  did  not 
drag  Bali  to  the  ground.  Both  did  not  know  how  to 
stop  the  fight.  At  last  they  made  a  treaty.  Bali  agreed 
to  stop  torturing  Sugriva  and  Hanuman  agreed  not  to 
cause  any  trouble  to  Bali.  Both  returned  to  their  own 
places.  After  that  Sugrlva  lived  in  RSyamukacala  with 
his  ministers  and  Bali  in  Kiskindha.  (Valmiki  Rama- 
yana, Kiskindha  Kanda,  Sarga  10;Kampa, 

5)  Bali  was  cursed  by  Matanga  the  great  hermit.  See 
the  word  Dundubhi  para  4. 

6)  Defeating  Havana.     Bali  had  got  a  boon    from    the 
Gods  that  he  would  get  half  the  strength   of  his  oppo- 
nent   who    stood  face  to   face  with  him  in  fight.  This 
power  enabled  Bali  to  defeat  all  his  foes  and  bring  the 
countries  in  all  directions  under  his  sway.  Ravana  heard 
about  this  and  decided  to   overpower  Bali  somehow  or 
other  and  approached  Kiskindha.  Bali  knew   this.   His 
minister,    Taran,    went  to  Ravana  and  told  him  about 
the  power  of  Bali  and  of  the  boon  by    which   Bali    got 
half  the  strength  of  his  opponent.  When  Ravana  heard 
of  this  peculiar  boon  he  decided  to  kill  Bali.  His  idea 
was  to  kill  Bali  by  going  behind  him  when  he  went  to 
the  sea-shore  to  take  bath  in  the  morning. 

Next  morning  Bali  went  to  the  eastern  sea-shore  and 
began  his  prayer  and  meditation.  Ravana  approached 
Bali  from  behind  and  sat  close  to  him.  Perhaps  the 
idea  of  Ravana  might  have  been  to  take  Bali  by  his 
tail  and  beat  him  on  the  ground.  Bali  knew  that 
Ravana  was  sitting  behind  him.  But  pretending  that 
he  knew  nothing  put  his  long  tail  on  the  body  of 
Ravana,  and  passed  it  lengthwise  and  breadthwise 
through  every  part  of  his  body  and  tied  him  like  a 
bundle  of  faggots,  and  made  a  jump  into  the  air. 
Within  a  short  time  he  visited  all  the  usual  places  and 
reached  Kiskindha.  Seeing  Ravana  hanging  by  the 
tail  of  Bali,  even  the  women  folk  laughed.  Thus 
Ravana  admitted  defeat.  Bali  let  him  go  unhurt. 
(Uttara  Ramayana). 

7)  Death.     After   Sita   had    been   stolen  away  Rama 
and  Laksmana  wandered    about   in    the    forest.  Then 
they  met  with  Hanuman,  who  took  them    to  his   King 
Sugrlva.    Sri   Rama  and  Sugriva  entered  into  a  treaty, 
by  which  Sri  Rama  was  to  kill   Bali  and    to  restore  to 
Sugriva  his  wife  who  was  under  the  custody  of  Bali,  and 
to  make  him  the    King   of  Kiskindha,    in   return    for 
which    Sugriva    and  his  men  had  to  help  Sri  Rama  to 
find  out  and  recover  Sita.  In  accordance  with  the  con- 
ditions of  the  treaty,  Sri  Rama    and    Sugriva    reached 
Kiskindha,  to  confront  with  Bali.  Sri  Rama  and    Sug- 
riva had  hit  up  on  a  plan,   by  which  Sri  Rama  was  to 
shoot  Bali  down,  when  Sugriva  was  engaged  in  boxing 
with  Bali.  Sugriva  challenged  Bali  to  a  single  combat. 
Bali  came  out  and  a  horrible  boxing  began  between  the 
two.    But   Sri    Rama   could    not  distinguish  one  from 

the  other.   Thier  faces  were   so    alike.    Sugriva,   being 
defeated,    receded    from    fight.  Sri  Rama  and  Sugriva 
returned  to    Riyamukacala.    Surgiva   spoke   ill   of  Sri 
Rama.  But  Sri  Rama  revealed  the  truth,    and    Sugriva 
believed  it.  Next  day  morning  both  of  them  started  for 
Kiskindha  to  kill   Bali.   Sri    Rama    had   put  a   flower 
garland    around  the  neck  of  Sugriva  to  distinguish  him 
from  Bali.   This  time  Tara  tried  to  the  utmost  to    dis- 
suade Bali  from  fighting.  But  without  paying  any  heed 
to    her   words   Bali    engaged    Sugriva    in  fighting.  Sri 
Rama,  sitting  in  ambush,  instantly  sent   an   arrow    to 
the  breast   of  Bali    who  looked  to  the  side  from  which 
the  arrow  came.  Before   falling  down,    looking  at    Sri 
Rama  Bali  said  "It  is  not  right  on  the  part  of  the  King 
of   Ayodhya    to   have   shot   an    arrow  from  ambush". 
Hearing  that  Sri  Rama  said,  "Ifyou  see  me  face  to  face 
you  will  become  devoted  to  me.  It  is  not  right    to    kill 
one's  devotee.  You  are  a  friend  of  Ravana,  who  as  you 
know,  is  my  foe.  If  I  let  you  alone  Ravana  is  likely  to 
get  your  help.  Besides,  you  have  a   boon  that  you  will 
get  half  the  strength  of  the  foe  who  faces  you,   and  as 
such  you  cannot  be  killed   by  anybody  in   direct  fight. 
It  is   unavoidable    for   the    safety   of  Sugriva,  for  my 
interest,  for  the  protection  of  the  world  at    large,   and 
for  the  preservation  of  law  and  order  that   you    should 
be    killed.  Was  it  not  a  violation  of  duty  on  your  part 
to  steal  the  wife  of  Sugriva  ?" 

Bali  fell  down.  Immediately  Taradevi  and  Aiigada 
arrived  there.  Tara  spoke  very  harsh  words  to  Sri 
Rama.  At  last  Bali  entrusted  Tara  and  Aiigada  with 
Sri  Rama  and  then  he  died.  (Kampa  Ramayana, 
Kiskindh'ikanda) . 

BALlHAM.  A  dynasty  of  Ksatriyas.  It  is  mentioned  in 
Mahabharata,  Udyoga  Parva,  Chapter  74,  Stanza  14 
that  there  was  a  king  named  Arkaja  in  this  dynasty. 

BALlSlKHA.  A  serpent  born  to  Kasyapa  prajapati 
of  his  wife  Kadru.  (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  35, 
Stanza  8). 

BALIVAK.  A  hermit.  It  is  mentioned  in  Mahabharata, 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Stanza  14  that  this  hermit 
had  been  a  member  of  the  durbar  of  Yudhisthira. 

BALLALA.  Son  of  a  Vaigya  named  Kalyana.  From 
childhood  Ballala  was  an  ardent  devotee  of  Ganapati. 
When  he  was  a  child  he  used  to  gather  pebbles  and 
make  a  heap  and  then  worship  it,  imagining  it  to  be 
GaneSa  (Ganapati). 

His  parents  did  not  like  this.  They  tried  their  best  to 
dissuade  him  from  this  habit.  Once  they  tied  him  to 
a  tree  and  gave  him  severe  cuts.  But  their  attempts 
were  futile.  One  day  an  image  of  Ganapati  arose  in 
the  place  where  the  child  used  to  worship.  (GaneSa 
Purana  1  :  2). 

BALLAVA  (VALLAVA) .  A  country  in  Bharata.  Men- 
tion is  made  about  this  country  in  Mahabharata, 
Bhisma  Parva,  Chapter  9. 

BALLAVA  (VALLAVA).  This  is  the  pseudo-name 
assumed  by  Bhimasena,  while  the  Pandavas  were  living 
in  pseudonymity  in  the  kingdom  of  Virata.  In  some 
Puranas  this  name  is  shown  as  'Valala'.  (M.B.,  Virata 
Parva,  Chapter  2,  Stanza  1) . 

BALOTKATA.  A  female  attendant  of  Subrahmanya. 
(M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  46,  Stanza  23) . 

BALVALA  (VALKALA).  An  asura.  This  asura  had 
been  tormenting  the  hermits  of  the  forest  of  Naimisa. 




This  asura  was  killed  by  Balabhadrarama.  *  For 
detailed  story  see  para  6  of  the  word  Balabhadra- 

NA  (BANABHATTA)  I.  A  Sanskrit  poet  who  lived  in 
the  7th  century  A.D.  He  was  a  member  of  the  assem- 
bly of  emperor  Harsa  vardhana.  'Harsacarita'  (prose) 
is  the  most  important  work  of  Bana.  Though  many  of 
the  descriptions  in  this  book  contain  exaggerations  it 
affords  plenty  of  scope  for  investigation  into  the  fea- 
tures of  ancient  Sanskrit  literature.  He  has  mentioned 
about  Vyasa,  Bhatiara  hariscandra,  Satavahana, 
Pravarasena,  Bhasa,  Kalidasa  and  such  others. 
Harsacarita,  in  a  sense,  is  a  Romance.  It  is  divided 
into  eight  Ucchvasas.  From  the  first  two  or  three 
chapters  informations  could  be  had  of  Banabhatfa. 
His  mother  RajyadevI  died  when  he  was  a  little  boy. 
At  the  age  of  fourteen  his  father  also  died.  After  that 
he  arrived  at  the  palace  of  Harsa.  The  story  of  Harsa- 
carita begins  with  the  death  of  Prabhakara-  Vardhana, 
father  of  Harsa.  The  Book  ends  with  the  story  incom- 
plete. Harsacarita  is  the  only  historic  prose  work 
available  in  Sanskrit. 
BANA  II.  A  mighty  and  powerful  Asura. 

1)  Genealogy  and  birth.     Descended  from  Mahavisnu    in 
the  following  order  :  Brahma-  Marlci-  Kasyapa-Hiranya- 

2)  Getting  a  boon.     Bana  began  his   reign  with  the    city 
of  Sonitapura    as   his   capital.    Then   he  went  to  the 
vicinity  of  the  Himalayas   and    began   to    do    penance 
thinking  of  Siva.  Siva  made    his  appearance  and  asked 
him   what   he  wanted.  He  requested  that  he  should  be 
considered  as  the  son  of  Parvati  and  that  he  should  be 
given  thousand  hands  so    as  to  destroy  all  his  enemies. 
Siva  granted  him  the  boon.  From   that   day    onwards 
Parvati    considered   him    as    the   younger   brother    of 
Subrahmanya.  He  returned  to  his  Kingdom  and  began 
to  reign. 

3  )  Battle  with  Sri  Krfna  and  his  fall.  (See  the  word 
Aniruddha)  . 

4)  Other  information.  (1)  In  the  Puranas  Banasura  is 
often  called  by  the  name  Mahakala,  which  is  the  name 
of  an  attendant  of  Siva.  (M.B  Adi  Parva,  Chapter 
65,  Stanza  20)  . 

(2)  Sukracarya  (the    teacher  of   the   Asuras)    always 
worked   for   the   uplift  of  Bana.     (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva, 
Chapter  38,  Stanza  29). 

(3)  In  the  Battle  with  Sri  Krsna,  Bana  was    helped  by 
Siva,  Subrahmanya,  and  the  Gods  like  Agni  (fire)  and 
others.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  38)  . 

(4)  Sri  Krsna  cut  down   the  thousand  hands    of  Bana 
with    his   Cakrayudha     (the  wheel   weapon).    (M.B'., 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  38). 

(  5)  Bana  often  stood  under  the  cover  of  the  mountain 
of  Kraunca  and  attacked  the  devas  (gods).  So  once 
Subrahmanya  had  to  cut  the  mountain  Kraunca  with 
his  arrows.  (M.B.,  Salya  Parva,  Chapter  46,  Stanza 
_82)  . 

BANA  III.  A  warrior  of  Subrahmanya.  Mention  is 
made  about  this  Bana  in  Mahabharata,  Salya  Parva, 
Chapter  45,  Stanza  67. 

BANA  IV.  An  asura.  During  the  regime  of  Sri  Rama 
this  Asura  fought  against  the  King  and  his  brothers.  A 
Sivaliiiga  had  been  consecrated  in  the  throat  of  this 

asura.  So  it  was  not  possible  for  Laksmana  to  defeat 
him  though  he  had  fought  with  him  for  so  many  days. 
Laksmana  heard  an  etherial  voice  saying,  "Unless  and 
until  the  image  of  Sivaliuga  is  removed  from  his  throat 
Bana  could  not  be  killed.'''  By  the  operation  of  arrows 
Laksmana  smashed  the  image  of  Sivalinga  in  his 
throat.  With  the  same  arrow  he  cut  the  throat  of  the 
asura  also  and  thus  Bana  was  killed.  (Kampa  Rama- 
yana,  Uttara  Kanda). 

BANDHUDAYADA.  A  son  who  can  claim  to  be  a  heir. 
The  Puranas  state  about  six  different  kinds  of  Bandhu- 

1)  Svayamjdta.     A  son  born    to   one's  wife    without  a 

2 )  Prariita.     A   son  born  to  one's  wife  by  the  blessing 
of  any  holy  man. 

3)  Putrikaputra.     Son  of  one's  daughter. 

4)  Paunarbhava.     A  son  born  after  a  re-marriage. 

5)  Kdnina.     A  son  born  before  marriage. 

6)  Bhaiija.     Son  of  one's   sister.   All    these   sons    are 
heirs.    (Chapter  119,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

BANDHUMAN.     A    king    of    the    country   ofVideha. 

(Chapter  6,  Brahmanda  Purana). 
BAND  HUM  ATI.     A    lady   attendant   of    Vasavadatta, 

wife  of  Udayana.  (See  Vasavadatta). 

BARBARA.  A  country  of  puranic  fame.  The  people 
living  there  were  called  Barbaras.  They  were  consider- 
ed as  low  caste  people.  There  is  also  a  statement  that 
these  people  were  born  of  the  sides  of  the  cow,  Nan- 
dini.  (Sloka  37,  Chapter  174,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 
During  the  victory  march  of  the  Panda vas  Bhlmasena 
conquered  the  Barbaras.  Nakula  also  conquered  these 
people.  (Chapter  32,  Sabha  Parva,  M.B.) .  In  the 
Rajasuya  yajfta  of  Dharmaputra  the  Barbaras  were 
present  with  gifts. 

BARBARIKA.  Son  of  Maurvi  born  of  Ghatotkaca,  son 
of  Bhima.  Skanda  Purana  gives  the  following  details 
about  him. 

Barbarika  was  a  Yaksa  in  his  previous  life.  Once  the 
devas  unable  to  bear  the  insufferable  harm  done  to 
them  by  the  Dana  vas  approached  Lord  Mahavisnu  for 
help  and  then  the  Yaksa  who  was  present  there  at  that 
time  said  with  arrogance,  "There  is  no  need  for  Visnu 
to  curb  the  activities  of  the  Danavas.  I  shall  do  it  my- 
self." Hearing  those  arrogant  words  Brahmi  cursed 
him  saying  that  in  his  next  life  he  would  be  killed  by 

True  to  the  curse  the  Yaksa  was  born  in  his  next  life 
as  Barbarika,  son  of  Ghatotkaca.  To  lessen  the  force  of 
the  curse  Krsna  advised  him  to  worship  Devi.  At  last 
pleasing  the  goddess  by  the  kindly  help  of  a  brahmin 
named  Vijaya  Barbarika  killed  a  demoness  called 
Mahajihva  and  a  demon  of  name  Repalendra.  The 
brahmin  further  gave  him  a  weapon  named  Vibhuti 
which  could  split  the  vital  centres  of  the  body  of  an 
enemy  and  said,  "Use  this  weapon  against  the  Kaura- 
vas  who  oppose  the  Pandavas." 

Once  Barbarika  defeated  his  grandfather  Bhima  in  a 
battle  and  greatly  grieved  over  the  injury  done  started 
to  commit  suicide.  Then  Devi  appeared  before  him  and 
reminded  him  thus,  ''You  will  get  salvation  only  if  you 
are  killed  by  Sri  Krsna  and  so  desist  from  committing 

In  the  original  of  Bhagavata   this  name  is  given  as  Balvala.  But  in  the  Malayalam  translation  the  name  used  is  "Valkala". 




The  great  war  started  and  Barbarika  fighting  on  the 
side  of  the  Pandavas  started  using  his  weapon  Vibhuti. 
He  sent  it  against  all  excepting  the  Pandavas,  Krpa- 
carya  and  Asvatthama.  He  did  not  leave  even  Krsna 
alone  and  the  weapon  fell  on  the  feet  of  Krsna  also. 
Enraged  at  this  Krsna  used  his  Sudarsana  Cakra  and 
cut  off  his  head  ;  at  once  Devi  appeared  and  brought 
him  to  life.  After  the  great  battle  on  the  advice  of 
Krsna  Barbarika  went  and  lived  in  Guptaksetra. 
BARHAISASVA.  A  king  born  of  the  dynasty  of  emperor 
Prthu.  Descending  in  order  :  Prthu-Visvarandhi-Candra- 
Yuvanaiva-Savanta  -  Brhadasva  -  Dhundhumara  (alias 
ValayasVa)  -  DrdhasVa  -  HaryasVa  -  Nikumbha  and  to 
Nikuihbha  was  born  Barhanaiva  and  from  him  Kr^asva- 
Prasenajit-Yuvanaiva  -  Mandhata.  (Saptama  Skandha, 
Devi  Bhagavata) . 

BARHIS.  A  devagandharva  clan.  These  were  born  to 
KaSyapa  prajapati  of  his  wife  Prtha.  (Chapter  65,  Adi 
Parva,  M.B.). 

BARHISAD  (S) .  A  class  of  Manes.  It  is  mentioned  in 
Agni  Purana,  Chapter  20  that  some  classes  of  manes 
such  as  Agnisvattas,  Barhisads,  Anagnis,  and  Sagnis  are 
said  to  have  derived  from  Brahma.  Brahma  created  two 
different  sets  of  Pitrs,  Agnisvattas  and  Barhisads. 
(Chapter  10,  Amsam  I,  Visnu  Purana). 
TheseBarhisads  who  are  members  of  the  Yamasabha  (coun- 
cil of  the  God  of  Death)  perform  the  mantric  rites  for 
the  dead.  The  name  brings  into  its  fold  the  world  of 
the  seven  sacred  sages  also.  ( Chapter  208,  Santi  Parva, 
M.B.) .  It  was  through  these  Barhisads  that  Brahma 
taught  Satvatadharma  to  a  brahmin  who  became  well- 
known  later  as  Jyestfia.  (Chapter  34,  Sloka  45,  Santi 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

Manusmrti  states  that  the  Barhisads  are  the  sons  of  the 
Maharsi  Atri  and  the  Pitrs  of  all  the  Daityas,  Danavas, 
Yaksas,  Gandharvas,  Uragas,  Raksasas,  Suvarnas  and 


Gandharvoragarak  sasam 

Smrta  Barhisado'trijah 

(Manusmrti,  Sloka  196,  Chapter  3). 

BARHISMATl.  Wife  of  Priyavrata,  son  of  Svayambhuva 
Manu  and  brother  of  Uttanapada.  She  was  the  daughter 
of  Visvakarmaprajapati.  Priyavrata  married  another 
daughter  of  his  named  Surupa.  Surupa  delivered  ten 
sons  and  a  daughter.  They  were  :  Agnidhra,  Idhma- 
jihva,  Yajflabahu,  Mahavira,  Rukmasukra,  Ghrta- 
prstha,  Savana,  Madhatithi,  Vitihotra,  Kavi  and  a 
daughter  Crjjasvatl.  Priyavrata  got  of  his  wife  Barhis- 
mati  three  sons,  Uttama,  Tamasa  and  Raivata.  These 
sons  became  in  due  course  the  Manvantaradhipatis. 
(Astama  Skandha,  Devi  Bhagavata). 

BARHASPATYA.  The  NitiSastra  of  Brahma.  Brhaspati 
condensed  and  codified  the  laws  of  Ethics  by  Brahma. 
This  was  compiled  by  Brhaspati.  This  book  contains 
three  thousand  chapters.  Mention  is  made  about  this 
Book  in  Mahabharata,  Sand  Parva,  Chapter  59,  Stanza 
BASKALA  I.  A  king  of  the  asuras. 

1)  Birth.  Two  sons,  Hiranyaksa  and  Hiranyakasipu 
and  a  daughter  Simhika,  were  born  to  Kasyapa  praja- 
pati of  his  wife  Diti.  Simhika  became  the  wife  of  Vipra- 
citti.  Four  sons,  Anuhrada,  Hrada,  Prahlada  and  Saihh- 
lada,  were  born  to  HiranyakaSipu.  Hrada  was  the  son 

of  Hrada.    Three  sons  Ayusman,  Sibi  and  Baskala  were 
born  to  Samhrada. 

2)  Later  history.  Baskala  became  one  of  the  ministers 
of  the  famous  and  mighty  hero  Mahisasura.  Ciksura 
was  the  minister  of  law  and  order.  Tamra  was  the  Finance 
Minister.  Asiloma  was  the  Prime  Minister  and  Bidala 
the  minister  of  foreign  affairs.  Udarkka  was  the  general 
of  the  army;  Baskala,  Trinetra  and  Kalabandhaka  were 
members  of  the  administrative  council.  was 
the  minister  of  education.  Baskala  played  an  important 
part  in  the  battle  between  Mahisasura  and  Indra. 
When  soldiers  were  killed  by  thousands,  Mahisasura 
sent  lastly,  Baskala  and  Durmukha.  Baskala  engaged 
himself  in  a  combat  with  Devi  who  fought  on  the  side 
of  the  Devas.  Baskala  became  angry  and  aiming  at  the 
breast  of  Devi  he  gave  a  severe  blow  with  his  club. 
But  Devi  evaded  him  with  her  club  and  gave  him  a 
severe  thrust  with  her  trident  at  his  breast  and  Baskala 
fell  dead.  (Agni  Purana,  Chapter  19;  Devi  Bhagavata, 
Skandha  5). 
BASKALA  II.  One  of  the  disciples  of  Vyasa.  (See  the 

word  Guruparampara) . 

BATU  (VATU).  A  brahmin  who  reads  the  Glta  daily. 
Because  in  life  he  held  fast  to  duty  he  was  carried  to 
heaven  after  death.  The  dead  body  was  eaten  away 
by  birds  and  the  bony  skeleton  remained.  When  rains 
started  the  empty  skull  was  filled  with  water  and  a 
sinner  passing  that  way  touched  the  skull  and  the  sinner 
got  salvation.  (Padma  Purana,  Uttara  Khanda). 
BAUDHAYANA.  A  teacher-priest  who  acted  according 

to   Kalpa  Sutras    (rituals  of  sacrifices) . 
BHADRA  I.  A  king  of  Cedi  who  fought  on  the  Pandava 
side.  Kama   killed   him.     (Kama  Parva,    Chapter  56, 
Verse  48) .' 
BHADRA  II.    One   of  the  four  elephants    which,    from 

Patala,  support  the  world.  (See  Astadiggajas) . 
BHADRA  III.  Son  of  Sraddha,  daughter  born  to  Svayam- 
bhuva Manu  by  his  wife    Satarupa.     Sraddha   had    the 
following  sons  :     Subha,  Prasada,  Maitrlputra,  Abhaya, 
Dayatmaja,    Santija,    Bhadra,    Muda,    Tustija    Smaya, 
Pus^ija  and  Yoga.     (Bhagavata,  Caturtha  Skandha) 
BHADRA  IV.  A   yaksa,  one   of  the  ministers  of  Kubera. 
He  had  to  be  born  as  a  lion  on  account  of  the  curse   of 
sage  Gautama. 

BHADRA  V.  People  of  the  kingdom  of  Bhadragana  are 
generally  called  Bhadras.  It  is  stated  in  the  Sabha 
Parva  that  the  Ksatriya  princes  of  Bhadragana  present- 
ed lots  of  money  in  connection  with  the  Rajasuya 
yajna  of  Yudhisthira. 
BHADRA  VI.  A  maharsi,  son  of  Pramati,  and  father  of 

BHADRA  VII.    A   son   born    to    Sri  Krsna  of  Kalindl. 

(Bhagavata,  Dasama  Skandha) . 
BHADRA  I.  See  Bhadrakall. 

BHADRA  II.  The  beautiful  daughter  of  King  Kakslvan. 
She  was  married  to  King  Vyusitas  va  of  the  Puru  dynasty. 
When  Bhadra,  in  unbearable  grief  lamented  the  death 
of  her  husband  his  soul  appeared  on  the  skies  and 
blessed  her.  Accordingly  she  got  pregnant  by  the  corpse 
of  her  husband  and  delivered  six  sons.  (Adi  Parva, 
Chapter  120,  Verse  38). 

BHA.DRA  III.  One  of  the  wives  of  Kubera.  Kunti  once 
related  the  story  of  Bhadra  to  Pancali  and  exhorted  her 
to  live  like  Bhadra.  (Adi  Parva,  Chapter  198,  Verse  6). 




BHADRA  IV.  The  word  Bhadra  is  used  as  another  name 
of  Subhadra,  sister  of  Sri  Ki'sna  in  Verse  14,  Chapter 
218  of  Adi  Parva. 

BHADRA  V.  Yet  another  Bhadra,  daughter  of  the  King 
of  Visala  is  mentioned  in  Chapter  45  of  the  Maha- 
bharata.  She  did  penance  for  getting  the  kingdom  of 
Karusa,  when  SiSupala,  disguised  as  King  Karusa  ap- 
peared on  the  scene  and  carried  her  away. 
BHADRA  VI.  There  is  reference  to  another  Bhadra, 
daughter  of  Soma  in  Chapter  154  of  the  Anusasana  Parva. 
She  once  did  intense  penance  to  secure  Utathya  as  her 
husband.  Atri  maharsi,  father  of  Soma,  came  to  know  of 
the  desire  of  his  granddaughter,  and  got  her  married 
to  Utathya.  Varuna  once  fell  in  love  with  Bhadra,  who 
was  an  exceptionally  beautiful  woman,  and  abducted 
and  concealed  her  in  the  sea.  When  Utathya  returned 
to  the  Asrama,  his  wife  was  missing.  He  understood 
what  had  happened  to  Bhadra  by  the  light  of  his  divine 
knowledge  (television  of  mind).  Burning  with  anger 
he  drank  up  the  sea  completely  dry,  and  Varuna  shud- 
dering with  fear  returned  Bhadra  to  Utathya  and  pro- 
fusely apologised.  Thus  ended  the  problem. 
BHADRA  VII.  Verse  24,  Chapter  7  of  the  Mausala 
Parva,  states  that  Bhadra,  one  of  the  four  wives  of 
Vasudeva,  father  of  Sri  Krsna  died  by  jumping  into  the 
funeral  pyre  of  her  husband. 

BHADRA  VIII.  A  daughter  of  the  KingofKaSl.  The 
grandson  of  Sagara,  a  king  of  the  Solar  dynasty  married 
Bhadra,  daughter  of  the  King  of  Kasl.  (Brahmanda 
Purana,  Chapter  96) . 

BHADRA  IX.  One  Bhadra,  daughter  of  Meru  was  married 
by  King  Agnldhra.  She  had   eight  sisters,    viz.     Meru 
Devi,    Pratiriipa,    Ugradamstrl,  Lata,  Ramya,  Syama, 
Nari  and  Devaviti.   (Bhagavata,  Pancama  Skandha) . 
BHADRA  X.   See  Vidusaka. 

BHADRA(  M) .  A  kingdom  in  ancient  India.  The  Ksa- 
triya  princes  of  Bhadrarn  gave  costly  presents  to 
Dharmaputra  at  the  Rajasuya  Yaga  (Sabhii  Parva, 
Chapter  52,  Verse  14).  Kama,  in  the  course  of  his 
digvijaya  ( conquest  of  countries)  subjugated  this  king- 
dom. (Vana  Parva,  Chapter  254.) 

BHADRABAHU.  A  king  of  Puruvamsa.    (Navama  Skan- 
dha, Bhagavata) . 
BHADRACARU.    A    son    of   Pradyumna.    (Bhagavata, 

Dasama  Skandha). 
BHADRADEHA.  A  king.  According  to  the  Visnu  Purana 

he  was  one  of  the  sons  of  Vasudeva  by  Devaki. 
BHADRAKA  I.  A  king  belonging  to  the    Aiiga    dynasty. 

(Agni  Purana,  Chapter  277). 

BHADRAKA  II.  A  brahmin  outcaste.  This  brahmin,  who 
spent  his  whole  life  in  committing  sins,  by  chance, 
took  magha  bath  for  three  days  at  Prayaga,  and  thus 
got  himself  sanctified. 

King  Virasena,  who  was  then  ruling  the  Avanti  king- 
dom had  earned  ample  sanctity  by  the  performance  of 
seventeen  Asvamedha  yagas.  The  Deaths  of  King 
Virasena  and  Bhadraka  took  place  on  one  and  the  same 
day.  Though  Bhadraka  was  immoral  in  his  life,  he 
went  to  heaven  along  with  Virasena  after  death  as  he 
had  taken  the  magha  bath.  (Padma  Purana,  Uttara- 
khanda) . 
BHADRAKALI.  Another  form  of  Parvati. 

1 )  General.  Lord  Siva,  on  hearing  about  the  self- 
immolation  in  fire  of  his  wife,  Sati  at  the  famous  yajna 
conducted  by  Daksa  rushed  in  all  anger  to  the  spot, 

and  beat  the  earth  with  his  matted  hair,  and  there  ensu- 
ed two  forces  called  Virabhadra  and  Bhadrakali.  This 
Bhadrakall  was  really  Sati  or  Parvati  in  another  form. 

2)  Bhadrakali  and  Kariisa.  There  is  a  story  in  the  Dasama- 
Skandha    of    Bhagavata  that    Karhsa  took  away    from 
the  room  in  which  Devaki  had  delivered  Sri   Krsna  the 
child   of  Yasoda  by    whom  Krsna  had  been  replaced, 
and    dashed  the    child    against    a    rock,    and  that  the 
child  then  escaped  from  his  clutches  and  rose  up  to  the 
sky.  That  child  was  Bhadrakali  in  another  form.    (Agni 
Purana,  Chapter  12). 

3)  Kampa,    Lankalaksmi    and  Bhadrakali.     Lankalaksmi, 
who  was   guarding    the  city   of  Lanka,  was  the  first  to 
prevent    Hanuman   from      entering    the    city.     Tamil 
Puranas  aver  that  this    Lankalaksmi  was  an  incarnation 
of  Bhadrakali.  Hanuman   thrashed    Lankalaksmi  with 
his  left  hand  at  which  she  vomitted  blood  and  fell  down 
unconscious.  On  regaining  consciousness  remembrance 
of  the  past  occurred  to  her,  and  after  thanking  Hanuman, 
who   restored    her  to  her    former  form,  she  returned  to 
Kailasa.  She    complained   to   Siva   that    she  could  not 
witness  the   Rama-Ravana    war.  Then  Siva    told    her 

"You  go  to  the  Driivida  country  and  be  put  up  in  the 
'Svayambhulinga'  temple  there.  I  shall  be  born  there 
as  Kampa,  compose  the  Ramayana  in  Tamil  and  get 
conducted  the  dolls-play.  Then  you  would  be  able  to 
enjoy  the  story  of  Sri  Rama,  especially  the  Rama-Ravana 
war,  both  by  hearing  and  seeing  the  same  in  better 
manner  than  by  actually  seeing  the  war. 
Bhadrakali  acted  according  to  this  bidding  of  Siva. 
There  lived  a  great  scholar  named  Sankaranarayana 
close  to  the  temple.  His  wife  was  Cinkaravalli.  Lord 
Siva,  as  decided  upon  previously  was  born  as  the  son 
of  Cinkaravalli,  who  had  become  a  widow  while  she 
was  worshipping  'Svayambhudeva'  for  the  gift  of  a 
child.  But,  Cinkaravalli,  who  feared  scandal  in  her, 
a  widow,  becoming  a  mother,  forsook  the  child  in  the 
temple  precincts  and  left  the  place.  One  Ganes"akaunta 
sighted  the  orphan  child,  and  took  it  to  Jayappavallan, 
the  Kaunta  chief.  The  Kaunta  chief,  who  was  without 
children  brought  up  the  orphan  child  as  though  it  had 
been  his  own  child.  Since  the  child  was  recovered  from 
the  foot  of  the  flagstaff  it  was  named  Kampa.  Kampa, 
who  was  very  intelligent  even  in  his  infancy,  but  lazy  by 
nature  turned  out  to  be  a  great  scholar  and  good  poet 
in  Tamil  by  the  time  he  grew  up  to  be  a  youth,  and 
he  became,  consequently  a  prominent  member  in  the 
'poets'  assembly'  of  King  Cola.  When  to  his  name  was 
added  the  plural  suffix  'r'  as  a  token  of  great  respect 
he  came  to  be  known  as  Kampar. 

Once  King  Cola  asked  Kampar  and  Ottakkiitta  another 
member  of  the  poets'  assembly  to  compose  in  Tamil 
poetry  the  story  of  Sri  Rama.  The  King's  direction  was 
that.  Ottakkutta  should  compose  his  poem  up  to  the 
incident,  Setubandhana  (building  abridge  in  the  sea  up 
to  Lanki)  and  Kampar  should  write  the  story  of  the 
war  in  his  poem.  Ottakkutta  completed  the  task  allotted 
to  him  within  six  months.  But  Kampar  had  not  attempt- 
ed to  write  even  a  single  line.  Having  been  informed 
about  the  matter  the  King  ordered  that  the  poem,  Rama- 
yana should  be  recited  in  the  assembly  the  very  next 
day  itself.  Kampar,  who  began  writing  his  poem  the 
same  day  with  the  object  of  completing  it  in  the  night 
itself  fell  asleep  without  writing  anything  at  all.  When 




Kampar  awoke  early  in  the  morning  he  saw  a  divine 
form  disappearing  from  his  room,  and  exclaimed,  "Oh! 
mother  !  you  have  slipped  away".  To  this  the  divine 
form  replies,  "Oh  Kampar  !  I  have  finished  writing". 
And,  then  the  divine  form  vanished  completely. 
When  Kampar  got  completely  out  of  sleep  and  looked 
about  he  found  the  Ramayana  story  fully  written  in 
verse  on  his  desk.  Kampar  inferred  that  the  poem  was 
composed  by  Saradabhagavati,  the  presiding  deity  of 
learning  and  literature,  and  he  was  wonder-struck.  He 
recited  the  poem  in  the  royal  assembly,  and  the  King 
and  others  too  were  wonder-struck.  And,  afterwards, 
according  to  the  orders  of  the  King  the  story  of  the  war 
(YudJhakrmda  Katha)  began  to  be  exhibited  as  dolls- 
play  in  the  presence  of  the  idol  of  the  Devi  in  the 
temple.  Thus  Siva  incarnated  himself  as  Kampar, 
recited  the  story  of  the  Rama-Ravana  war  in  the  temple, 
and  hearing  it  Bhadrakall  danced. 
The  above  is  the  chief  legend  about  Kampar. 

BHADRAKALIPPATTU.  (Pa»u=Song).  Folk  song  very 
popular  in  Kerala  temples.  The  practice  is  to  sing 
songs  in  praise  of  Bhadrakali 

BHADRAKARA.  A  king  of  ancient  India;  he  once  left 
his  kingdom,  in  fear  of  Jarasandha,  and  took  refuge  in 
South  India.  (Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  14,  Verse  26). 

BHADRAKARI^ESVARA(M).  A  sacred  place.  He  who 
visits  this  place  conducts  worship  will  never  have  to 
face  ill  fate.  (Vana  Parva,  Chapter  84,  Verse  39). 

BHADRAMATA  (BHADRAMANA).  Daughter  born  to 
Kasyapa  prajapati  of  his  wife,  Krodhavaia.  The  ten 
daughters  of  Krodhavasa  are:  Mrgi,  Mrgamanda, 
Han,  Bhadramata,  Matangl,  Sarddiili,  Sveta,  Surabhi, 
Surasa  and  Kadru.  (Sarga  14,  Aranya  Kanda, 
Valmiki  Ramayana) . 

BHADRAMATI.  A  very  poor  brahmin.  This  brahmin 
had  six  wives  and  two  hundred  and  fortyfour  daughters. 
(Narada  Puranam) . 

Once,  hearing  the  glory  of  Bhudana  (giving  away  land 
free  to  the  deserved )  he  was  much  impressed  and  from 
then  onwards  he  became  filled  with  a  strong  desire 
to  give  land  free  to  the  poor.  He  had  no  land  of  his 
own.  But  he  went  to  the  king  of  Kauiambi  and  begged 
for  some  land  which  when  received  was  immediately 
given  as  gift  to  poor  brahmins.  After  that  he  went  and 
bathed  in  the  Papanasana  tirtha  situated  in  the  mount 
of  Venkatacala.  Bhadramati  got  salvation  by  this  good 
deed.  (Skanda2,l,10). 

BHADRASAKA.  A  name  of  Subrahmanya.  It  is  the  figure 
of  Subrahmanya  in  the  shape  of  a  goat  that  is  known 
as  BhadraSaka.  (Sloka  4,  Chapter  228,  Vana  Parva, 

BHADRASALA(M).  A  forest  on  the  top  of  the  Moun- 
tain Bhadrasvavarsa  which  lies  to  the  east  of 
Mahameru.  There  is  a  tree  called  Kalamra  in  this 
forest.  This  is  a  very  sacred  tree  standing  miles 
high  above  other  trees  and  is  being  worshipped  by 
the  Vrddhacaranas.  By  worshipping  this  tree  the 
men  have  become  white  and  majestic  and  by  drink- 
ing a  juice  prepared  from  its  leaves  the  women  keep 
themselves  eternally  young.  Chapter  seven  of  Bhisma 
Parva  says  like  this  about  this  tree:  "Kalamra  stands 
towering  miles  high  bearing  flowers  and  fruits  at  all 
times  of  the  year.  The  Vrddhacaranas  worshipping  it 
are  white,  strong  and  majestic.  The  women  drinking 
its  juice  are  lotus-complexioned,  beautiful,  Moonfaced, 

well  versed  in  music  and  dance  and  having  a  life-span  of 
over  a  thousand  years,  remaining  young  all  the  time." 

BHADRASAJR.A.  A  king  in  the  region  of  Kasmira.  His 
only  son,  Sudharrnan,  was  very  much  devoted  to  Siva 
and  spent  most  of  his  time  worshipping  him.  The 
father  tried  his  best  to  withdraw  his  son  from  this  ex- 
cessive devotion  but  failed. 

Then  one  day  the  great  sage,  Parasara,  came  to  the 
King  as  his  guest  and  the  King  then  requested  him  to 
make  his  son  withdraw  from  his  Siva-worship.  But 
Parasara  tht-n  told  him  about  the  previous  life  of 
Sudharma  and  consoling  him  persuaded  the  King  to  do 
the  'Rudrabhiseka'  (uninterrupted  pouring  of  cold 
water  over  an  idol  of  Siva)  by  himself.  The  king  then 
entrusted  the  state  with  his  son  and  left  for  the  forests 
accepting  an  ascetic  life.  ( Skandha  Purana,  3.3.20-21). 

BHADRASENA.  A  king.  Uddfdaka  Maharsi  performed 
a  demoniac  yaga  to  destroy  this  king.  (Satapatha- 

BHADRAJsRAVAS.  A  king  whom  the  Puranas  extol  as 
having  ruled  Sauras{ra  in  Dvaparayuga.  At  the  forest 
of  Naimisa  sage  Suta  told  the  following  story  to  explain 
how  LaksmI  (goddess  of  wealth)  took  her  abode  in  the 
houses  of  men. 

Bhadrasrava  ( BhadraSravas)  who  was  ruling  Saurasfra 
had  seven  sons  and  a  daughter  of  his  wife  Suraticand- 
rika.  The  daughter  was  named  Syamabala.  Once 
truthful-Syamabala  was  sitting  under  a  green-wood  tree 
with  her  playmates  playing  with  diamonds  and  gold 
sand  when  the  goddess  of  wealth  disguised  as  an  aged 
brahmin  woman  went  to  the  gates  of  the  palace  and  asked 
for  permission  to  see  the  queen,  Suraticandrika.  The 
sentries  pressed  for  details  about  her  and  then  she  said 
this :  "My  name  is  Kamala.  My  husband  is  a  man  named 
Bhuvanasva  and  we  live  in  Dvaraka.  Your  queen  in  her 
previous  birth  was  a  Vaisya  woman.  One  day  she  quar- 
relled with  her  husband  and  he  beat  her  hard  and  then 
crying  loudly  she  ran  out  of  the  house.  I  met  her  and 
when  she  told  me  her  story  I  instructed  her  to  observe 
a  Punyavrata  (Fasting  to  any  particular  deity).  She  did 
it  willingly  and  as  a  result  she  acquired  great  wealth 
and  happiness. 

One  day  the  husband  and  wife  died.  Yama,  the  king 
of  Death,  then  sent  his  orderlies  to  bring  before  him 
that  couple  who  had  always  quarrelled  with  each  other 
while  living.  Bound  by  ropes  the  ghastly  servants  of 
Yama  were  about  to  drag  them  to  their  land  when  the 
angelic  servants  of  Visnu  with  the  insignia  of  'Sarhkha- 
Cakra-Gada'  on  their  lapels  arrived  there  and  those 
messengers  of  Laksmi  headed  by  Svaprakasa  cut  off  the 
ropes  and  carrying  them  in  a  Rajahariisa  chariot  took 
them  through  noble  paths  to  the  land  of  LaksmI.  They 
lived  there  happily  for  a  period  calculated  at  the  rate  of 
a  thousand  years  for  one  week  of  Punyavrata  observed. 
In  the  end  to  complete  the  goodness  remaining  they 
were  born  as  King  and  queen  on  earth  with  plenty 
of  wealth  and  happiness.  But  they  have  now  forgotten 
about  the  Punyavrata  and  I  have  come  here  to  remind 
them  of  it." 

The  gate-keeper  immediately  went  to  her  mistress  and 
told  her  all  that  happened.  But  the  queen,  Suraticand- 
rika got  angry  when  she  heard  the  story  and  ordered 
the  old  woman  to  be  sent  away  from  there  with  thrash- 
es. The  old  woman  ran  away  from  the  palace  crying 
loudly  and  Syamabala  on  hearing  the  cry  went  and 


enquired  about  the  incident.  On  hearing  the  story 
from  the  woman  Syamabala  got  instructions  regarding 
that  Punyavrata  from  the  old  woman  and  started 
observing  it.  Within  four  weeks  she  got  married  and 
went  to  her  husband's  house.  After  Syamabala.'  s  depar- 
ture from  the  palace  the  wealth  of  the  King  began  to 
wane  and  they  became  so  poor  that  at  the  request  of  the 
queen  the  King  Bhadrasrava  went  to  his  daughter  to  ask 
for  help.  The  daughter  gave  his  father  a  block  of  solid 
gold  drapped  in  a  paper.  But  on  his  return  to  the 

Calace   when   he  opened    the  bundle  he  found  there  a 
lock   of  charcoal    instead  of  gold.  On  seeing  the  mis- 
hap the  king  burst  into  a  cry. 

Suraticandrika  then  went  to  her  daughter  and  was  well 
received  and  attended  to.  During  her  stay  there  the 
Punyavrata  day  of  the  month  came  and  the  daughter 
tried  her  best  to  make  her  mother  also  observe  the 
same.  But  the  poverty-stricken  queen  broke  the  fast 
without  her  daughter's  knowledge  by  eating  what  re- 
mained in  the  dishes  of  the  children.  But  the  next 
month  Syamabala  compelled  her  mother  to  observe  the 
fast  strictly  and  so  Suraticandrika  took  the  Vrata 
successfully.  A  few  days  after  that  Suraticandrika  re- 
turned home  and  to  her  amazement  found  everything 
in  plenty  there  once  more.  (Chapter  11,  Bhaga  2, 
Padma  Purana). 

BHADRASREX  YA.  A  Hehaya  King  who  was  ruling  a 
state  with  Mahismati  as  capital.  He  had  fought  many 
wars  with  Divodasa,  king  of  KasT.  (See  under  Divo- 


BHADRASVA  I.  A  king  of  Puruvamia.  He  was  the  son 
of  Rahovadi.  BhadrasVa  had  ten  sons:  Rkseyu,  Krseyu, 
Sannateyu,  Ghrteyu,  Citeyu,  Sthandileyu,  Dharmeyu, 
Sammiteyu,  Krteyu  and  Matinara.  (Chapter  278,  Agni 
Purana  )  . 

Once  Agastya  went  and  stayed  for  seven  days  in  the 
palace  of  Bhadrasva  and  his  wife  Kantimati.  Every- 
day Agastya  used  to  speak  in  glowing  terms  about 
Kantimati  and  asked  about  the  reason  for  it  he  replied  : 
"In  her  previous  birth  Kantimati  was  a  servant  girl  in 
a  wealthy  house.  The  masterof  the  house  once  entrust- 
ed her  with  the  task  of  seeing  that  none  of  the  temple 
lights  went  put  on  the  night  of  DvadasI  in  the  month 
of  Tula  (Asvina  —  October).  She  did  her  duty  so 
willingly  and  sincerely  that  she  was  born  as  a  queen  and 
you  a  King".  Then  Agastya  gave  them  instructions 
about  that  Vrata  which  both  Bhadrasva  and  Kantimati 
observed  sincerely,  receiving  as  a  result  benediction 
from  Visnu.  (Vayu  Purana). 

BHADRASVA  II.  Agnidhra,  son  of  Priyavrata  and 
grandson  of  Manu,  got  nine  sons  of  his  wife  Purvacitti, 
a  celestial  maiden.  One  of  the  sons  was  BhadrasVa! 
His  brothers  were  Nabhi,  Kirhpurusa,  Hari,  Ilavrta, 
Ramyaka,  Hiranmaya,  Kuru  andKetumala.  The  coun- 
try ruled  by  Bhadrasva  was  called  Bhadrasva  lying 
to  the  east  of  the  mountain  Gandhamadana.  (Pancama 
Skandha,  Bhaga  vata). 

BHADRASVA.  An  island  near  the  mountain  of  Meru. 
Dharmaputra  was  ruling  this  land  and  Sanjaya  once 
described  this  land  to  Dhrtarastra.  (Chapter  14,  Santi 
Parva  and  Chapter  7,  Bhlsma  Parva). 

BHADRATANU.     An  immoral  brahmin.  On  the  advice 

I     of  Danta   he  became  a  devotee  of  Visnu  and  attained 
salvation.    (Padma  Purana,  Kriya,  Chapter   17). 
BHADRATUNGA.     A  sacred  place;  a  dip   in   the   holy 


waters  of  this    place   would  entitle  one  to  Brahmaloka. 
(Vana  Parva,  Chapter  82,  Verse  80). 
BHADRAVATA.     The    abode    of    ParvatI     and    Para- 
mcsvara.  The  glory  of  it   is  described    in  Chapter   82 
Vana  Parva,  M.B. 

BHADRAYU.  A  king  who  was  a  devotee  of  Siva.  He 
was  a  leper  and  in  his  life  he  suffered  much,  even  the 
pangs  of  death.  His  wife  was  the  dutiful  and  good 
natured  lady,  Kirtimalinl. 

On  the  sixteenth  birthday  of  Bhadrayu  Siva  appeared 
before  him  in  the  name  of  Rsabha  and  blessed  him 
after  instructing  him  on  the  precepts  of  Rajadharma. 
He  further  gave  him  a  dagger  and  a  conch  as  weapons 
and  twelve  thousand  elephants.  With  the  might  of  all 
these,  Bhadrayu  became  unconquerable.  (Siva  Purana, 
batarudrasamhita) . 

One  day,  while  Bhadrayu  was  ruling  the  country,  Siva 
came  in  the  guise  of  a  tiger  and  carried  away  the  wife 
of  a  brahmin.  Bhadrayu,  a  firm  protector  of  his  sub- 
jects gave  his  own  wife  to  the  brahmin  and  prepared 
himself  to  give  up  his  life  in  fire.  Siva  greatly  pleased 
at  this  selfless  act  of  Bhadrayu  befitting  a  true  King 
appeared  before  him  and  blessed  him  and  gave  back 
the  brahmin  his  wife. 

Bhadrayu  in  his  previous  birth  was  a  King  called 
Mandara  and  Klrtimalini  in  her  previous  birth  was 
Pingala,  queen  of  Mandara.  (Skanda  Purana,  3.3.12; 


1 )  General.     One  of  the  twelve  Adityas  born  as  sons    of 
Kasyapa  prajapati    by  his    wife,    Aditi.  Visnu,  Sakra, 
Aryaman,    Dhata,    Tvasta,     Pusa,    Vivasvan,    Savita, 
Mitra,  Varuna,  AmSu  and  Bhaga — these  are  the   Dva- 
dasadityas,  and  they  were  Devas  famous  as  Tusitas    in 
the  last  Caksusamanvantara. 

2)  Other  information.  ( 1 )  Bhaga  married  Siddhi,  and  the 
couple  begot  three  sons  called    Mahiman,   Vibhu    and 
Prabhu  and  three  daughters  called  Suvrata,  Vararoha, 
and  Asls. 

(2)  Bhaga  participated  in  the  birthday  celebrations  of 
Arjuna.   (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  122,  Verse  66). 

(3)  At   the    time   of  Khandavadaha    (burning  of  the 
Khandava  forest)  Bhaga,  as  a  supporter  of  Indra,   who 
was    fighting   Arjuna    and  Sri  Krsna,  sprang  upon  the 
enemies  with  sword  in  hand.   (M.B.    Adi  Parva,  Chap- 
ter 236,  Verse  36) . 

(4)  Bhaga  shines    forth    in   Indra's    assembly.    (M.B., 
Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  7,  Verse  22). 

(5)  Bhaga  was  also  present  at  the  installation  of  Subrah- 
manya  as   commander  of  the  fighting    forces.    (M.B., 
Salya  Parva,  Chapter  45) . 

(6 )  After  Dcvayuga    (Deva  age) ,  the  Devas  asembled 
together   and    decided   upon  the  share  of  yajfias  due  to 
each  of  them,  and  in  thus  fixing  shares    they    left  out 
Rudra.  Enraged   at    this   neglect  Rudra   made  a  bow 
and  fought  against  the  Devas.  During  the  fight  Rudra, 
with   the    point   of  his   bow,   extracted    the   hands    of 
Savita,  the  eyes  of  Bhaga  and  the  teeth  of  Pusa.    Ulti- 
mately   the   Devas    satisfied    and  pleased.  Rudra,  who 
returned  to    Bhaga    and  others  the  eyes  etc.  which  had 
been  extracted.  (M.B.,  Sauptika  Parva). 

BHAGA  II.  Certain  Puranas  refer  to  Bhaga  as  one  of 
the  eleven  Rudras.  But,  this  view  is  not  universally 




BHAGA  III.  A  vedic  god  considered  to  be  the  lord  of 
wealth,  prowess  and  happiness.  Bhaga  is  also  one  of 
the  six  Adityas  mentioned  in  the  Rgveda,  viz.  Bhaga, 
Mitra,  Aryainfi,  Varuna,  Daksa  and  Arhsa.  (Rgveda, 

BHAGADA.  An  attendant  (woman)  of  Subrahmanya. 
(Salya  Parva,  Chapter  46,  Verse  26) . 

BHAGADATTA.  Bhagadatta  was  King  of  Pragjyotisa- 
pura.  Mahabharata  furnishes  the  following  information 
about  him. 

1)  Bhagadatta   was   born    from    a    limb    of   the  asura 
called  Biskala.    (M.B.,  Adi  Parva,   Chapter  67,  Verse 


2)  He    was   present  at  the  wedding  of  Pancali.    (Adi 

Parva,  Chapter  185,  Verse  12). 

3 )  Known  also  as  lord  of  the  Yavanas  (Yavanadhipa) . 
Bhagadatta  was  a  friend  of  Pandu,  and  that   friendship 
was  transferred    to  Yudhisthira    too.    (Sabha    Parva, 
Chapter  14,  Verse  14). 

4)  The   triumphal   tour    of  Arjuna  in  connection  with 
the  Rajasuya  yajna  performed  by  Yudhisthira    evoked 
feelings  of  jealousy  in  the  heart  of  Bhagadatta,  and    he 
fought  against  Arjuna.  The  courage  and  prowess  Arjuna 
exhibited    in    the     fight     astonished  Bhagadatta,    who 
congratulated    Arjuna  on    his   supreme    courage    and 
admitting  defeat   yielded    to    Arjuna.     (Sabha  Parva, 
Chapter  26,  Verse?). 

5)  Bhagadatta,  along  with  the  Yavanas  was  present  at 
the  Rajasuya  of  Yudhisthira.  He  also  made  presents  of 
horses  of  very  high  pedigree  and  very  costly  gems    etc. 
(Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  51,  Verse  14). 

6)  Kama  once    defeated    Bhagadatta  in  fight.    (Vana 
Parva,  Chapter  254,  Verse  5). 

7)  In  the  great  war  he,  with  his    army,  fought  on  the 
side   of  Duryodhana.      (Udyoga  Parva,    Chapter    19, 
Verse  15). 

8)  During  the  first  day  of  the  war   Bhagadatta  fought 
a  duel  with  the  King  of  Virata.    (Bhlsma  Parva,  Chap- 
ter 45,  Verse  49) . 

9)  He  was    defeated    in    his   fight   with    Ghatotkaca. 
(Bhlsma  Parva,  Chapter  64,  Verse  59). 

10)  In  the  fight  which  took  place  after  the  above    de- 
feat Bhagadatta  caused  Bhlmasena  to  faint  in  the  field. 
(Bhlsma  Parva,    Chapter  64,  Verse  13). 

1 1 )  And  after    that   he    defeated  Ghatotkaca  in  fight. 
(Bhlsma  Parva,  Chapter  83,  Verse  40). 

12)  Next    ensued   the   combat    with  King  Dasarna  in 
which  the  King  was  defeated.    (Bhlsma  Parva,  Chapter 
95,  Verse  48) . 

13)  It   was  not  long  after  this  that  Bhagadatta  cut  off 
the  hands  of  the  Ksatradeva.   (Bhlsma  Parva,  Chapter 
95,  Verse  73). 

14)  ViSoka,  the    charioteer    of  Bhlma-sena,  hit  by  the 
arrows  of  Bhagadatta  fell  down    and  fainted.  (Bhlsma 
Parva,  Chapter  95,  Verse  76). 

15)  Bhagadatta  and  Satyaki  fought  against  each  other. 
(Bhlsma  Parva,  Chapter  111,  Verse  7). 

16)  Chapters    113    and  114   of  the  Bhlsma  Parva  d.s- 
cribe    the  combats    fought  by  Bhagadatta  with  Bhlma- 
sena and  Arjuna. 

17)  Bhagadatta  and  Drupada  fought  with    each  other. 
(Drona  Parva,  Chapter  14,  Verse  40). 

18)  Bhagadatta  killed  king   Dasama.     (Drona   Parva, 
Chapter  26,  Verse  38) . 

19)  Bhagadatta    killed    Ruciparvan.     (Drona    Parva, 
Chapter  26,  Verse  52) . 

20)  He  shot  the  Vaisnavastra  (arrow  given  by  Visnu) 
on  Arjuna.     (Drona  Parva,  Chapter  29,  Verse  17). 

21)  Aijuna  killed  Bhagadatta.   (Drona  Parva,  Chapter 
29,  Verse  48). 

22)  After  his  death,   his  son,  Vajradatta   became  King 
of  Pragjyotisa.  Arjuna  killed  Vajradatta    also.     (Asva- 
medha  Parva,    Chapter  76) . 

23)  King  Sailalaya,  who  was  Bhagadatta's  grandfather, 
attained  Indraloka  on  account  of  the    greatness  of  his 
tapas.  (Asrainavasika  Parva,  Chapter  20,  Verse  10). 

BHAGANANDA.  An  attendant  woman  of  Subrahmanya. 
(Salya  Parva,  Chapter  46,  Verse  11). 

BHAGA VADDHYANAPARVA.  A  sub-parva  of  Udyoga- 
Parva.  It  comprises  chapters  72-150  in  Udyoga  Parva. 

BHAGA VATA.  One  of  the  eighteen  famous  Puranas. 
Gayatrl  is  the  main  theme  of  this  Purana  and  based  on 
it  it  dwells  on  the  greatness  of  Dharma  (duty)  and  states 
about  the  dharmas  of  Sarasvatakalpa.  (See  under 
Purana) . 


1)  General.  The  Bhagavad  Gita  is  a  poem  consisting  of 
650  verses  divided  into  eighteen  chapters.  The  Gita 
covers  chapters  25-45  in  the  Bhlsma  Parva  of  the  Maha- 
bharata, and  it  is  in  the  form  of  a  talk  or  discussion 
between  Arjuna  and  Lord  Krsna.  The  mighty  armies 
of  the  Pandavas  and  the  Kauravas  were  arrayed  on 
opposite  sides  for  mortal  combat  on  the  field  of  Kuru- 
ksetra  when  Arjuna,  overcome  by  grief  at  the  prospect 
of  fathers,  brothers,  preceptors  and  other  Kinsmen 
fighting  and  killing  one  another  expressed  to  his 
charioteer,  Sri  Krsna  his  aversion  to  fighting.  But,  the 
Lord  pointed  out  to  the  unwilling  Arjuna,  by  unique 
and  various  arguments,  his  imperative  duty,  under  the 
circumstance,  to  fight  and  fight  in  heroic  earnestness  with 
the  result  that  Arjuna  shed  his  disinclination  to  fight  and 
entered  (he  fray,  which  ended  in  the  ultimate  victory 
of  the  Pandavas.  And  the  dialogue  between  Arjuna 
and  Krsna,  and  especially  the  great  teaching  of  Krsna 
the  "field  form  the  theme  of  the  Gita.  The  Gita 


contains  three  spheres  or  fields  of  teaching;  the  karma 
yoga  (philosophy  of  action) ,  jnana  yoga  (philosophy  of 
knowledge)  and  Bhaktiyoga  (philosophy  of  devotion). 
The  three  yogas  are  treated  each  in  six  chapters. 
The  theme  of  the  Gita  is  philosophy,  and  it  is  revered 
as  one  of  the  most  sublime  philosophical  texts  of  the 
Hindu  religion.  Many  a  great  thinker  and  philosopher 
like  Acarya  Sahkara,  Ramanujacarya  and  Madhva- 
carya  have  annotated,  and  written  commentaries  on 
the  Gita.  There  is  a  school  of  thought  which  believes 
that  the  Gita  was  taught  to  Arjuna  by  Krrna  himself 
on  the  battle-field  in  something  like  tabloid  form  and 
that  Vyasa  eleborated  the  mighty  teaching  in  its  present 
form.  The  poet,  Bana,  who  flourished  in  the  7th 
century  A.D.,  and  the  great  Sankara,  who  lived  in  the 
8th  century  believed  that  the  Gita  was  sung  by  Krsna 
himself.  But  there  are  some  modern  thinkers,  who 
argue  that  the  Gita  was  composed  some  time  between 
the  third  and  fourth  centuries  B.C.  and  it  was  inter- 
polated into  the  Mahabharata  in  the  second  century 

The   Gita   has   translations    in   all  the  languages  of  the 
world.  The   whole    world    has    acclaimed    it  as  a  very 




weighty  and    valuable    contribution    in    the    sphere  of 


2)    Theme  of  the  Gitd.  It  has  been  mentioned  above  that 

the  Glta  forms  chapters  25-45  in  the  Bhisma    Parva  of 

the    Mahabharata.  The  subject-matter  of  each  chapter 

of  the  Glta  is  given  below. 

Chapter    25.   Arjunavifdda  yoga; — Both    the    armies  take 

positions  in  Kuruksetra.  At  the  sound    of   the   conches 

Aijuna  becomes  dejected  and  sorrowful  at  the  prospect 

of  killing  relations,  preceptors  and  Kinsmen. 

Chapter  26.  Sdrhkhya  yoga  : — The  greatness  and   majesty 

of  the  Samkhya  and  the  Karma  yogas. 

Chapter  27.  Karma  yoga  : — The  need  for  action  according 

to  the  Jftana  and  the  Karma  yogas. 

Chapter  28.  Jndnakarma  Vibhaga  yoga  : — Power  of  Saguna 

Brahma    (Brahma  with      attributes) ,    Niskama-karma 

yoga     (Action    without    an  eye  on  the  result)  spiritual 

greatness  of  various  yajftas. 

Chapter   29.   Sannyasa  yoga  : — Samkhya  yoga,    Niskama- 

karma  yoga,  Jnana  yoga,  Jftana  yoga  with  Bhakti. 

Chapter  30.  Atmasamyama   yoga  : — Niskamakarma    yoga, 

Atmodharana,  Jfianayoga. 

Chapter  31.  Jfianayoga: — Jnanavijfianas,  origin   of  the 

world,  the  Daiva  and  Asura  aspects  of  Isvara,  worship 

of  other  Devas. 

Chapter  32 .    Tarakabrahma  yoga  : — Seven    questions     of 

Arjuna  about  Brahma,    Atmatatva    and    Karma.    Sri 

Krsna's  answers    thereto.  Bhakti  yoga,  the  Sukla   and 

the  Krsna  margas. 

Chapter  33.    Rdjardja  guhya yoga  : — Jnana  and  Vijnana, 

origin  of  the  world,    Is"varasvarupa, 

pasana,  Bhagavadbhakti. 

Chapter  34.  Vibhuti  yoga  :  ~ Bhagavan's  Vibhuti  (Divine 

attributes) ,  Bhakti  yoga. 

Chapter  35.       ViwarupadarSanayoga  : —  Arjuna's  prayer 

to  be  shown    Visvarupa  (cosmic  form),    description  of 

visvarupa  by  Sri  Krsna  and  Sanjaya,  Sri  Krsna  reveals 

visvarupa  to  Arjuna;  fear-stricken  at  the  sight,  Arjuna 

sings  the  praise  of  Krsna. 

Chapter  36.   Bhaktiyoga  : —    The  great    benefits  of  wor- 
shipping God  with  form  and  without  form. 
Chapter  37.  Kfttrakfttrqjfta  Vibhaga  yoga  : — Description 
of  Ksetraksetrajfia   with  Jnana,    and    of  Prakrti  and 

Chapter  38.  Gunatrayavibhaga  yoga: —  The  greatness  of 
Jnana;  world's  origin  from  Prakrti  and  Purusa,  the 
three  gunas,  sattva,  rajas  and  tamas;  means  to  attain 
god;  marks  of  Yugatltapurusa. 

Chapter  39.  Punt fottama yoga: —  Essential  principles  of 
world  and  life,  attainment  of  God,  relationship  bet- 
ween Jivatma  and  Paramatma,  principle  and  theory  of 
ksara  purusa  and  aksara  purusa. 

Chapter  40.  Daivdsura  sampadvibhaga  yoga: — Good  ac- 
tions, evil  deeds,  scientific  actions  and  unscientific 

Chapter  41.  Sraddhatrayavibhdga  yoga : — Descriptions  of 
Scientific  tapas,  diet,  yajnatapas  and  dana.  Interpre- 
tation of  Om. 

Chapter  42.  Mok$asannydsa  yoga: —  Tyagam,    Sarhkhya 
theory,  Varnadharmas,  jnananistha,  Niskamakarmayoga 
with  bhakti  and  the  greatness  of  the  Glta. 
(For    another  story   about    the    greatness    of  the  Glta 
see  Dussasana  II). 

BHAGAVATl.     The    words    Bhagavan    and    Bhagavati 
mean  Paramatma  (universal  self)  and  Prakrti  (Nature 

and  its  modifications)  respectively.  Prakrti  is  also 
called  by  the  name  Sakti.  The  following  elucidation 
once  given  by  Mahavisnu  about  Bhagavan  and  Bhaga- 
vati is  greatly  illuminating. 

Time,  space,  atmosphere  and  the  universe  (Brah- 
mandam)  are,  just  like  Paramatma,  eternal.  This  is  the 
truth  and  reality.  Below  this  eternal  Gokula  exists 
Vaikunthaloka,  which  also  is,  like  the  former,  eternal. 
Just  like  this,  Prakrti,  which  is  a  sport  to  Brahma  and 
is  also  without  beginning  or  end  (SanatanI)  too  is 
eternal.  In  the  same  manner  as  flame  exists  in  fire  in- 
separable from  it,  moonlight  in  moon,  beauty  in  the 
lotus  flower  and  brightness  in  the  sun,  so  does  nature 
exist  in  soul  inseparable  therefrom.  In  the  same  way 
as  the  goldsmith  cannot  make  gold  ornaments  without 
gold  and  the  potter  cannot  make  pots  without  clay,  the 
Paramatma  will  not  in  the  least  be  able  to  function 
unaided  by  Prakrti.  Prakrti  (Nature,  Devi)  is  all  power- 
ful. 'Para'  becomes  powerful  enough  to  do  everything 
when  he  joins  the  Devi. 

The  sound  'Sa'  means  welfare  and  good  fortune,  and 
the  sound  'kti'  means  prowess.  Hence  ''Sakti"  means 
the  embodiment  of  welfare  and  prowess  or  she,  who  is 
the  giver  of  welfare  and  prowess.  Bhagavati  combines 
in  herself  knowledge,  affluence,  riches,  fame  and  strength. 
As  the  Paramatma  is  always  with  and  inseparable  from 
such  Bhagavati  he  is  called  Bhagavan  also.  When 
Prakrti  and  Paramatma  remain  combined  it  is  called 
Parabrahma,  which  possesses  neither  form  nor  attri- 
butes. And,  when  Prakrti  and  Purusa  separate,  of  their 
own  accord,  they  assume  forms  and  attributes. 
The  above  is  Saiva  doctrine  in  a  nut-shell.  The 
Vaisnavas  do  not  accept  this  position.  They  ask,  "How 
is  it  possible  to  have  brightness  or  effulgence  without 
there  being  an  effulgent  one?"  Therefore,  the  Vaisnavas 
believe  in  the  existence,  at  the  centre  of  an  effulgent 
sphere,  of  a  thing  possessing  the  utmost  effulgence  and 
brightness  equal  to  that  of  Brahma.  This  'thing' — 
Deva — is  very  efficient  and  effective  to  remedy  sorrows 
due  to  birth,  death,  disease  etc.  and  to  him  the  life- 
time of  Brahma  is  just  one  minute  only.  This  Deva  is 
called  Paramatma,  Parabrahma  and  Krsna  by  the 
Vaisnavas.  'Krs'  means  maximum  devotion  (love) 
towards  Paramatma,  and  'na'  means  he  who  becomes 
slave  to  such  devotion.  Hence  Krsna  means  he  who 
becomes  a  slave  to  the  love  of  his  devotees.  There  Is 
another  meaning  also  for  the  word  Krsna.  Krs  means 
all  and  'na'  means  seed  or  root;  and  thus  Kfsna  means 
he,  who  is  the  root  of  everything.  In  the  very  begin- 
ning there  was  only  this  Krsna  ;  and  this  Lord,  sub- 
ject only  to  his  own  will  and  pleasure,  divided  him- 
self into  two,  the  left  side  becoming  woman  and  the 
right  side  man.  (Devi  Bhagavata,  Navama  Skandha) . 

BHAGINI.  A  word  used  in  addressing  women.  Verse 
129  in  chapter  two  of  the  Manusmrti  lays  down  that 
the  wife  of  another  person  and  women  who  are  not 
one's  relatives  should  be  addressed  either  as  Bhavati, 
Subhage  or  Bhagini. 


1)  Genealogy.  Descended  from  Visnu  thus:  Brahma- 
Marici  -  KaSyapa-Vivasvan-Vaivasvata  manu-Iksvaku- 
Vikuksi-Sasada  -Kakutstha-Anenas-PrthulaSva-Prasena- 
jit-Yuvanaiva  -  Mandhata  -  Purukutsa  -  Trasadasyu- 
Anaranya-HaryaSva-Vasumanas  -  Sudhanva  -  Traiyya- 
runa-Satyavrata  or  TriSahku  -  HariScandra-RohitaSva- 




Harita  -  Cuflcu  -  Sudeva  -  Bharuka  -  Bahuka  -  Sagara- 
2)  Recluse.  Many  years  had  not  lapsed  after  his  coro- 
nation as  King  when,  in  the  heart  of  Bhagiratha  spiri- 
tual thoughts  began  to  crop  up.  A  great  sage  called 
Tritula  was  his  guru.  Once  Bhagiratha  asked  the  guru 
what  was  the  means  to  get  rid  of  worldly  sorrows,  and 
the  guru  replied  as  follows: — 

The  ego  will  be  annihilated  when  the  tendencies  and 
cravings  towards  objects  of  the  senses  are  absolutely 
suppressed  and  the  whole  and  perfect  truth  is  realised 
through  knowledge,  the  practice  of  concentration  etc. 
The  ego  will  not  disappear  as  long  as  one  does  not 
become  one's  real  self  by  completely  overcoming  the 
sense  of  pride,  shame  etc.  which  form  the  outer  case 
of  worldly  life.  The  egoless  state  is  the  ultimate 
achievement  and  most  supreme  state.  Oh  !  Bhagiratha  ! 
if  you  would  get  rid  of  sentiments  like  pride  etc.,  give 
up  all  attachment  to  material  objects,  become  fearless 
and  gift  away,  with  thoughts  concentrated  on  the  inner 
self,  all  your  wealth  to  enemies,  and  then  move  among 
those  enemies,  without  any  sense  of  ego  and  pride 
about  this  material  body,  and  take  alms  from  them 
(enemies)  and  also  give  up  me,  who  am  your  preceptor 
in  the  matter  of  knowledge  ;  then  you  will  become  the 
most  sublime  Brahma".  This  advice  of  the  guru 
affected  him  so  much  that  Bhagiratha,  holding  his 
duties  firmly  in  mind,  engaged  himself  in  spiritual 
practices,  and  after  spending  some  time  thus  he  per- 
formed, according  to  rules,  the  Agnistoma  yajfta  aimed 
at  gifting  away  everything.  All  wealth  like  cows,  land, 
horses,  gold  etc.  were  distributed  in  gifts  to  noble 
brahmins  and  the  poor  folk  according  to  their  eligibi- 
lity for  the  same.  Within  three  days  he  had  gifted  away 
everything  except  the  clothes  he  was  wearing.  And, 
then  he  invited  his  neighbouring  enemy  king  and  gave 
to  him,  without  the  least  hesitation,  the  kingdom  which 
had  been  bereft  of  all  wealth.  The  ministers  and  other 
citizens  felt  very  sorry  about  the  whole  thing.  But,  Bha- 
giratha left  the  country  at  once  for  other  places  having 
with  him  only  the  clothes  he  was  wearing.  He  spent  his 
days  in  various  places  and  forests  where  he  was  not 
known  even  by  name.  Ere  long,  Bhagiratha  attained 
ultimate  spiritual  solace.  And,  then  he  accidentally 
came  to  his  former  kingdom,  which  was  then  being 
ruled  by  the  enemy  King.  The  ministers  and  other 
citizens  to  whose  houses  he  went  begging  for  alms 
recognised  him,  and  with  sorrow  unbearable  they 
appealed  to  him  to  accept  the  throne  again  and  rule 
the  country.  Bhagiratha  rejected  their  request,  and, 
after  staying  there  for  some  time,  he  started  for  other 
places.  During  this  wandering  of  his  he  met  his  old 
preceptor,  Tritula,  and  both  of  them,  in  company, 
toured  for  some  time  cities  and  forests.  They  felt  it  very 
painful  to  keep  on  to  their  body  like  that.  They 
thought  like  this  :  "Why  should  the  body  be  kept  like 
this.  What  if  this  material  object  continues  to  exist 
or  perishes  ?  But  let  it  (the  body)  continue  as  long  as 
it  exists  without  in  any  way  being  against  the  order 
of  things  and  ethical  practices".  And,  in  this  frame  of 
mind  they  traversed  the  forests.  Now,  the  minister  of 
a  distant  kingdom  who  was  on  the  look  out  for  a 

successor  to  the  King  who  had  died  heirless,  persuaded 
Bhagiratha  to  accept  the  Kingship  of  that  country.  The 
ministers  of  Bhagiratha 's  former  Kingdom  also  now 
requested  him  to  resume  his  old  kingship,  especially 
since  its  new  ruler  had  already  expired.  Bhagiratha 
obliged  them,  and  became  once  again  King  of  his  own 
country.  (Jfianavasis{ham) . 

3)  Bhagirathaprayatnam.   (Himalayan    or  Herculean   effort). 
Sagara,    an    old   predecessor   of  Bhagiratha   had    two 
wives   called    Kisim    and   Sumati.  KeSini  had  one  son 
named  Asamanjas   and  Sumati    60,000    sons.      Sagara 
once    conducted    an    Asvamedha    yajfia    in  the  Indo- 
Gangetic  plane,  when  Indra  stole  away    the    sacrificial 
horse  and  kept  it  quite  near  to    sage   Kapila   who    was 
doing  tapas  in  Patala.    The  60,000  sons  of  Sagara    set 
out    in  search  of  the  horse  and  found  it  out  in  Patala. 
At  the    sight  of    the    horse     they   shouted   themselves 
hoarse.  Enraged  at  this  sage  Kapila  reduced  those  sons 
of  Sagara  to  ashes  in  the  fire  which  emanated  from    his 

After  entrusting  Asamanjas  with  the  duty  of  perform- 
ing the  funeral  rites  of  his  60,000  sons  Sagara  expired. 
Asamanjas  transferred  that  duty  on  to  Arhsuman,  and 
he  to  Bhagiratha.  Bhagiratha  did  penance  on  the  sea- 
shore concentrating  his  mind  on  Gangadevi.  The  Devi 
appeared  before  Bhagiratha  and  asked  him  to  choose 
what  boon  he  would,  and  he  requested  the  Devi  to  per- 
form the  funeral  rites  of  60,000  sons  of  Sagara  remain- 
ing in  the  form  of  ashes  in  Patala.  To  this  Gangadevi 
replied  that  the  earth  will  not  be  able  to  withstand 
the  impact  of  her  powerful  flow,  but  she  shall,  if  Siva 
permits,  flow  into  his  matted  hair.  And,  Gangadevi 
?sked  Bhagiratha  to  first  get  that  permission.  This  did 
not  dishearten  Bhagiratha,  who  went  to  mount  Kailasa 
to  do  penance  so  that  Siva  might  grant  him  his  prayer. 
He  thus  did  penance  for  1000  years.  Siva  appeared  to 
him  and  agreed  to  receive  the  rushing  flow  of  Ganga 
water  on  his  matted  head.  And,  accordingly  Siva  stood 
in  position  to  receive  the  rushing  waters  of  Ganga,  and 
Ganga  flowed  on  to  his  head.  Even  the  most  powerful 
flow  of  Ganga  water  on  his  head  did  not  cause  Siva  to 
move  from  his  position  even  by  a  hair's  breadth.  This 
awakened  the  conceit  in  Gangadevi,  understanding 
which  Siva  contained  her  on  his  head.  Without  finding 
any  outlet  the  waters  of  river  Ganga  flowed  along  the 
matted  hairs  of  Siva  for  thousand  years.  So,  Bhagi- 
ratha had  once  again  to  please  Siva.  Thus  pleased 
again  Siva  shook  his  matted  head  and  one  drop  of 
water  fell  on  the  ground,  and  that  is  the  river  Ganges 
in  North  India.  The  Ganga  flowed  along  plane  ground 
to  Patala  and  performed  the  funeral  rites  of  Sagara's 
sons.  (M.B.  Vana  Parva,  Chapter  108  ;  Valmiki 
Ramayana,  Bala  Kanda,  Canto  42;  Brahmanda 
purana,  Chapter  97  ;Bhagavata,  Navama  Skandha, 
Kampa  Ramayana  (Tamil),  Yuddha  Kanda;  Padma 
Purana,  Part  4,  Chapter  21 ). 

4)  Other  Information. 

(1)  Bhagiratha  is  a  member  of  Yama's    assembly    and 
serves  him.  (M.B.,  Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  8,  Verse  11 ). 

(2)  Siva  bestowed  boons  on  him.  (Vana Parva,  Chapter 
180,  Verse  1). 

•According  to  verse  12,  Chapter  25,  of  Vana  Parva,  Bhagiratha  is 
the  son  of  Amsuman. 

the  sen  of  DilTja.     Fit    nctt    cf  il.c  Turf.iss  nftr    to  him  a 




(3)Bhagiratha  had  faith  in  the  great  efficacy  of  making 
a  gift  of  cows.  (AnuSasana  Parva,  Chapter  76,  Verse 

(4)  He  married  his   daughter   to    Kautsa.    (AnuSasana 
Parva,  Chapter  131,  Verse  25). 

(5)  Once   Bhagiratha  made    a  gift  of  one  lakh  of  cows 
with  calves  to  Maharsi  Kohala,  and  attained  Uttama- 
loka.    (Anusasana  Parva,  Chapter  137,  Verse  27). 

BHAGlRATHl.  Another  name  of  Gariga.  (See  under 

BHAGNARATHA.  A  synonym  of  Citraratha.  (See 

BHAGUR1.  A  man  of  great  erudition,  Bhaguri  was 
noted  for  his  proficiency  as  a  SarvaSfistra  Pandit 
(scholar  of  all  sciences),  Vyakaranakara  (grammarian), 
Kosakara  (etymologist) ,  Jyotissastrajfia  (Astronomer) 
and  Smrtikara  (authority  on  Smrti) . 

BHAIRAVA  I.  A  naga  belonging  to  the  Dhrtarastra 
Varhs'a.  There  is  a  reference  to  this  naga  in  Maha- 
bharata,  Adi  Parva,  Chapter  51,  Verse  17.  He  was 
burnt  up  at  the  Sarpasatra  performed  by  King  Janame- 

BHAIRAVA  II.     A  Parsada  of  Siva. 

1)  General.     Immediately   after  his  birth,  this   terrible 
monster  subdued   all    the    Devas   without    getting  the 
permission  of  Siva.  Enraged  at  it,  Siva  turned  him  into 
a  tree  by  a  curse.  But  Siva  was  soon  pacified  and  lifted 
the    curse    by    declaring  that  those  who  offered  puja  to 
the   gods   would  get    the   full  reward  for  their  worship 
only  if  they  offered  puja  to  Bhairava  also. 

Bhairava  became  a  tree  as  soon  as  he  was  cursed.  He 
became  a  tree  because  he  subdued  the  gods.  Therefore 
that  tree  came  to  be  called  "DAMANAKA"  tree 
(Damana  =  Subdue).  It  has  another  name,  "TATIRI" 
tree.  Even  now,  pious  people  offer  puja  to  this  tree. 
(Agni  Purana,  Chapters  52-80). 

2)  Birth.     Once   Brahma    and   Visnu    became  swollen 
with  pride.  In  his  haughty  way,  Brahma  insulted  Siva. 
Under  the  insult,  Siva  was  infuriated  and   out   of    the 
fire  of  his  fury  was  born  Bhairava  with  his  black  form. 
(Linga  Purana  1 .90) . 

3)  Brahmahatya.     As  soon   as   he   was    born,    Bhairava 
rushed  towards  Brahma  and  pinched  off  his  fifth    head 
which  had  insulted  Siva.  By  this,  he   incurred   the  sin 
of  Brahmahatya.    For    the   expiation    of  this    sin,    as 
ordered  by  Siva,  Bhairava  started  on  a  journey    to    go 
abegging,   with    Brahma's  severed  head    in   his    hand. 
Siva    then   created   a  woman  named    "Brahmahatya" 
and  asked  her  to  follow  Bhairava. 

Although  Bhairava  visited  many  holy  places,  he  was 
not  able  to  liberate  himself  from  the  sin  of  Brahma- 
hatya. At  last,  at  the  suggestion  of  Siva,  he  went  to 
Varanasi  and  washed  off  his  sin.  Brahma's  head  which 
he  carried,  was  also  deposited  there  and  the  place  be- 
came famous  under  the  name  of  "Kaplilamocana 
tirtha".  (Siva  Purana,  Satarudra  Sarhhita). 

4)  Family.  In    Kalika    Purana    there    is  an    elaborate 
account   of  the    family  of  Bhairava.  According  to  this 
Purana,  Vijaya,  the  reputed  King  of  Varanasi  was  born 
in   the    family   of  Bhairava.    Kalika    Purana  also  says 
that    Vijaya    destroyed   the   Khandavl   city  and  set  up 
the  Khandava  forest  in  its  place- 
According    to    Kalika    Purana,   Bhairava    and  Vetala 
were,  in  their  previous  births,  two  Sivap  Irsadas  named 
Mahakala  and  Bhrhgi.  It  was  by  the  curse  of   Parvatl. 

that  they  were  born  as  mortals  in  their  next  birth. 
(Kalika  Purana  53). 

The  Puranas  mention  eight  Bhairavas  called  Asitarhga, 
Ruru,  Canda,  Krodha,  Unmatta,  Kapiili,  Bhlsana  and 

5)  Shape.  Bhairava  has  a  terrible  shape.  He  wears  the 
crescent  moon  and  plaited  hair  on  his  head.  His  wea- 
pons are,  sword,  arrow,  dagger,  bow,  trident,  rope 
etc.  At  times  he  is  dressed  in  elephant-skin.  He  has 
five  faces.  Serpents  are  his  ornaments.  (Agni  Purana, 
Chapters  52-80). 

BHAIRAVl.  One  of  the  eight  Ambas.  They  are  : 
Rudrarcika,  Rudracandl,  NatesVari,  Mahalaksmi, 
Siddhacamundika,  SiddhayogeSvari,  Bhairavl  and 
Rupavidya.  All  these  are  the  eight  different  forms  of 
Devi.  (See  the  word  DEVl). 

BHAJAMANA.  A  Yadava  King,  whose  father  was  Sat- 
vata  and  mother  Kausalya,  and  they  had,  beside 
Bhajamana,  another  son  called  Satvata  or  Andhaka. 
Bhajamana  married  the  two  daughters  of  S  njaya, 
named  Bahyaka  and  Upabahyaka  by  whom  he  got  six 
sons.  (Bhagavata,  Navama  Skandha). 

BHAJYA.  An  acarya  in  the  line  of  the  Rk  disciples  of 
Vyasa.  Bhajya  studied  Valakhilyasarhhita  at  the  feet  of 
his  guru  Biiskali.  (Bhagavata,  Dvadasa  Skandha). 

BHAKSAKA.  A  Sudra  sinner.  In  Paclma  Purana  the 
following  story  is  related  about  this  Sudra. 
Bhaksaka  who  was  once  going  aimlessly  somewhere 
felt  extremely  thirsty,  and  quenched  his  thirst  by 
drinking  water  which  was  found  near  the  small  plat- 
form raised  for  the  holy  Tulasi  shrub.  The  sanctity  of 
the  water  thus  drunk  washed  away  all  the  sin  attached 
to  him.  Some  time  later  he  was  killed  by  a  forest- 
dweller,  and  he  attained  svargaloka  (heaven) .  Bhaksaka, 
in  his  previous  birth,  was  a  king  who  led  a  voluptuous 
life,  and  he,  once,  robbed  a  very  beautiful  woman  of 
her  chastity,  and  it  was  as  a  punishment  for  the  sin 
that  the  King  had  to  be  born,  in  the  next  birth,  in  the 
womb  of  a  Sudra  woman.  (Padma  PurSna,  Brahma 
Kanda,  Chapter  22). 

BHAKTI.  A  Devi  born  in  Dravida  deSa  (Southern 
India) .  Once  Devi,  along  with  her  two  sons,  Jnana 
and  Vairagya,  started  on  a  walking  tour  to  Gokula  and 
Vrndavana  via  Karnataka,  Maharastra  and  Gurjara 
(Gujarat) .  During  the  long  tour  the  mother  and  her 
sons  became  aged.  But,  as  soon  as  they  set  foot  on 
Gokula  and  Vrndavana  old  age  quitted  Bhakti  and 
she  became  young  again.  But,  her  sons  remained  old. 
So  the  mother  requested  Narada  to  turn  them  young 
again.  Narada  read  out  to  them  the  Vedas,  the 
Vedanta  (Upanisads)  and  the  Bhagavad  Gita,  all  to  no 
purpose.  Bhakti's  sons  still  remained  old.  Then  Sanaka, 
Sananda  and  Sanatkumara  asked  Narada  to  read  out 
the  Bhagavata  to  them.  Narada  did  so,  and  the  sons  of 
Bhakti  Devi  became  young  again.  (Padma  Purana). 

BHALANDANA.  A  king.  Though  by  birth  he  was  a 
brahmin  he  became  a  VaiSya  because  of  doing  things 
belonging  to  the  VaiSya  community  like  trade  and 
commerce.  (Markandeya  Purana) .  According  to,  the 
Bhagavata,  Visnu  Purana  and  Vayu  Purana  Bhalan- 
dana  was  the  son  of  Nabhaga. 

BHALLATA.     A  king  of  the  line  of  Bharata.  He  was  the 
son  of  King  Visvaksena  and  father  of  King  Brhada!va. 
(Navama  Skandha,  Bhagavata). 




BHALLATA(M).  A  place  of  habitation  in  ancient  India. 
Bhimasena  conquered  this  land  during  his  victory  march. 
(Sloka  5,  Chapter  30,  Sabha  Parva,  M.B.). 
BHALUKI  I.     A  Rsi,  who  was  a  member   of  Yudhis(hi- 
ra's  assembly.   (Sabha  Parva,  Chapter  4,  Verse  15). 

BHALUKI  II.  A  maharsi.  He  also  accompanied  the 
Pandavas  to  Dvaitavana.  (Vana  Parva,  Chapter  27). 

BHALUKI  III.  An  acfirya.  He  was  a  disciple  of  Larigali, 
a  member  of  the  Sfuna  line  of  disciples  of  Vyasa. 
(Vayu  Purana). 

BHAMAHA.  A  critic  who  lived  in  the  sixth  century  A.D. 
He  was  one  of  the  top  critics  in  the  Sanskrit  language. 
His  important  work  is  'Kavyalamkara'.  This  is  also 
called  Bhamahalarhkaraby  a  few.  There  are  six  chapters 
in  this.  The  first  chapter  deals  with  KavyaSarira,  the 
second  and  third  with  Alaihkara,  the  fourth  with  Kavya- 
dosa  the  fifth  with  Nyaya  and  the  sixth  with  Sabdasud- 
dhi.  As  against  Datidi  Bhamaha  separates  'Katha'  from 
'Akhyayika'.  According  to  him  the  requisites  of  a  good 
Kavya  are  sweetness,  pleasantness  and  liveliness.  Dandi 
prescribes  ten  attributes  for  a  good  Kavya.  Bhamaha  is 
of  opinion  that  Vakrokti  is  no  alarhkara  at  all.  In 
a  wider  sense  it  is  'atisayokti'  (exaggeration).  But 
Bhamaha  admits  it  has  a  place  in  Kavya. 

BHAMINl.  Wife  of  Aviksit,  King  of  Vaigali.  The 
famous  Marutta  is  the  son  born  to  this  couple.  The 
Markandeya  Purana  states  that  Bhamini  once  went  to 
Nagaloka  to  give  refuge  to  the  serpents  there. 

BHANAVl.  A  river.  Sri  Rama  and  Laksmana  on  their 
way  to  the  forests  from  Citrakufa  crossed  this  river, 
Bhanavi.  (Sarga  52,  Ayodhya  Kanda,  Valmlki  Rama- 
yana) . 

BHA^'pAYANI.  A  maharsi.  This  sage  sits  in  Devaloka 
and  worships  Indra.  (Sloka  12,  Chapter  7,  Sabha  Parva, 

BHA\*plRA(M).  An  ancient  forest.  It  was  in  this 
forest  situated  in  Arhbadi  that  Sri  Krsna  with  his  cow- 
herd chums  conducted  his  childhood  exploits.  There 
was  a  very  huge  tree  of  name  Bhandlra  in  this  forest 
and  it  was  under  this  great  tree  that  Krsna  and  his 
friends  met  daily  for  their  play.  This  forest  is  on  the 
northern  bank  of  Gaiiga  in  front  of  Kesighatta  in 
Vrndavana.  The  Puranas  proclaim  that  it  was  here  that 
Brahma  conducted  the  marriage  of  Krsna  withRadha. 
(Chapter  38,  Sabha  Parva,  Daksinatya  Pa jha,  M.B.). 

BHANGA.  A  serpent  born  in  the  Taksaka  dynasty. 
Bhaiiga  was  burnt  to  ashes  at  the  Serpent  Yajna  per- 
formed by  King  Janamejaya.  (M.B.,  Chapter  57, 
Verse  9)  . 

BHANGAKARA  I.  A  king,  son  of  Aviksit  and  grandson 
of  King  Kuru  of  the  Lunar  dynasty.  ( Adi  Parva,  Chap- 
ter 94,  Verse  53). 

BHANGAKARA  II.  A  king  of  the  Yadu  dynasty.  He 
attended  the  grand  celebrations  held  at  Mount  Raivata. 
(Adi  Parva,  Chapter  218,  Verse  11) . 

BHANGASURI  I.     Another  name  of  King  Rtuparna. 

BHANGASVAN  ( BHANGASVANA) .  A  king  in  ancient 
India.  For  the  story  of  his  transformation  into  a  woman 

refer  to  para  42  under    'Indra'. 

BHANU  I.  A  son  born  to  Krsna  of  Satyabhama.  (Dasama 
Skandha,  Bhagavata) . 

BHANU  II.  Son  of  Dyau;  this  Bhanu  was  a  guru  of 
Surya.  (Sloka  42,  Chapter  1,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BHANU  III.  A  devagandharva  born  to  Kasyapa  praja- 
pati  of  his  wife  Prtha.  (Sloka  47,  Chapter  65,  Adi 
i'arva,  M.B.) . 

BHANU  IV.  He  is  the  son  of  an  agni  called  Pancajanya. 
He  is  born  of  the  spiritual  essence  of  Angiras  and 
Cyavana.  This  Bhanu  is  called  Manu  and  Brhadbhanu. 
(Chapters  220  and  221,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.'). 

BHANU  V.  A  king  of  ancient  Bharata.  This  king  took 
a  flying  tour  of  Kuruksetra  in  Indra's  aeroplane  to 
witness  the  battle  between  Arjuna  and  Drona.  (Sloka 
9,  Chapter  56,  Virata  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BHANU  VI.  A  yadava.  He  learnt  the  art  of  archery 
from  Pradyumna.  Sahadeva  married  the  daughter  of 
this  Bhanu  called  Bhanumati.  (Vana  Parva,  180,  27 
and  Harivamsa  2.20.12). 

BHANUDATTA.  A  brother  of  Sakuni.  In  the  Maha- 
bhfirata  battle  he  fought  against  Bhlma  and  died. 
(Sloka  24,  Chapter  157,  Drona  Parva,  M.B.). 

BHANUDEVA.  A  warrior  of  Pancala  state.  Kama  killed 
him  in  battle.  (Sloka  15,  Chapter  48.  Kama  Parva). 

BHANUKOPA.  A  demon.  He  fought  against  Subrah- 
manya.  (Asura  Khanda,  Skanda  Purana). 

BHANUMAN  I.  A  king  of  the  dynasty  of  Sri  Rama. 
He  was  the  father  of  a  King  called  Sakradyumna. 
(Navama  Skanda,  Bhagavata). 

BHANUMAN  II.  A  son  born  to  Krsna  of  Satyabhama. 
(Dasama  Skandha,  Bhagvata). 

BHANUMAN  III.  AprinceofKalinga.  He  fought  on 
the  side  of  the  Kauravas  and  was  killed  by  Bhimasena. 
(Chapter  54,  Bhisma  Parva,  M.B.) 

BHANUMATI  I.  The  daughter  of  Bhanu,  a  leader  of 
the  Yadavas.  When  Sri  Krsna  went  with  his  retinue  of 
Yadavas  to  visit  the  holy  palace  called  Pindaraka  the 
Yadavas  conducted  a  wine  festival.  During  that  festi- 
val a  demon  of  the  name  Nikumbha  carried  away 
Bhanumati.  This  was  because  of  a  curse  to  Bhanumati 
from  Durvasas  whom  Bhanumati  did  not  respect  once 
when  they  met  at  the  garden  of  Raivata.  Durvasas  had 
after  the  curse  consoled  her  by  assuring  her  that  she 
would  be  saved  and  married  by  Sahadeva,  one  of  the 
Pandavas.  True  to  this,  Bhanumati  was  married  to  Saha- 
deva in  the  presence  of  Narada  and  Krsna.  (Visnu 
Parva,  Chapter  90) . 

BHANUMATI  II.  Daughter  of  Krtavirya.  She  was  the 
wife  of  Ahamyati,  a  king  of  the  Puru  line  of  monarchs. 
They  had  a  son  named  Sarvabhauma. 

BHANUMATI  III.  Daughter  of  Angiras.  She  was  ex- 
traordinarily beautiful.  (Sloka  3,  Chapter  218,  Vana 
Parva,  M.B.) . 

BHANUSENA.  A  son  of  Kama.  He  was  killed  in  the 
battle  by  Bhimasena.  (Sloka  27,  Chapter  48,  Karna 
Parva,  M.B.). 

BHARADVAJA  I.     Another  name  of  Dlrghatamas.** 

**  Dlrghatamas  is  also  called  Bharadvaja.  But  the  Bharadvaja  of  puranic  fame  is  not  Dirghatamas.  Dlrghatamas  is  the  son  whom 
Brhaspati  illegitimately  (tot  of  Mamata,  his  brother's  wife.  There  was  then  another  legitimate  child  in  the  womb  of  Mamata.  Knowing  this 
the  devas  told  her  'Bharadvaja'  meaning  'bear  the  brunt  of  two'  and  so  the  son  of  Brhaspati  got  the  name  of  Bharadvaja  also.  The  real 
name  of  this  son  was  Dirghatamas  or  Vitatha.  Dirghatamas  is  not  the  Bharadvaja  who  was  the  father  of  Drona.  The  famous  Bharadvaja 
was  the  son  of  Atri.  Dirghatamas  or  Vitatha  was  the  adopted  son  of  Bharata.  son  of  Dusyanta.  (Bhagavata  and  Kamparamayana.  For 
details  see  under  Bharata  I  and  Dirghatamas. 




BHARADVAJA    II.     The    sage  Bharadvaja    of  Puranic 

1 )  General    information.      Ayodhya    Kanda    of    Kampa 
Ramayana    states    that    this    sage   was  the    son  of  Atn 
Maharsi.  He  lived  for  many  thousands  of  years.    He   is 
connected   with    Valmiki    and    the  story  of  Sri  Rama. 
Bharadvaja  was  for  many  years  a  disciple    of  Valmiki. 
He  was  present  with  Valmiki    when    the    hunter    killed 
one    of    the    couple    of    Kraunca.  When  Valmiki  and 
Bharadvaja  reached  the  shores    of   the    river,    Tamasa, 
that  day  Valmiki  told  Bharadvaja  thus  :  "Look,  Bhara- 
dvaja, what  a  clean  ghat  this  is.  The  water  is  pure    and 
clear.     Place    your    water-jug    here    and   give    me   my 
valkala.  We  will  get  down  here  in  this    sacred    water". 
Then   Valmiki    taking    the    valkala    from    the    disciple 
walked    along    the    shore    admiring   the    beauty  of  the 
forest  trees  and  found  on  his  way  the    historic  Kraunca 
couple.  (Sarga  2,  Bala  Kanda,  Valmiki  Ramayana). 

2)  Bharadvaja  and  the  study  of  Vedas.     Bharadvaja    gave 
himself  untiringly  to  the  study  of  the  Vedas.  He  obtain- 
ed   from    Indra    a   boon    to  extend  his  term  of  life  on 
earth  to  many  thousands   of  years  by   different   stages, 
each  stage  covering  a  span  of  a  thousand  years  of    life. 
All  these  years  he  devoted  to  an    incessant  study  of  the 
Vedas.    Finding    the    term  not  sufficient  for  completing 
the  study  of  the  Vedas  he  appealed  to  Indra   again  for 
extension  and  Indra  appearing  in  person  took  him  before 
three   mountains    and    giving    him    three    handfuls   of 
sand    told    him  thus,    "What    you  have  studied  about 
Vedas   till    this    time  is    equivalent    to   the   amount  of 
sand  I  have  now  given  and  what  is    yet  to   be   studied 
about  the  Vedas  is  as  big  as  the  three  mountains  before 
you".    Any   other  mortal    being   would  have  been  dis- 
heartened  by    this  revelation  made  by  Indra,   but   not 
Bharadvaja.  Undaunted  he  continued  his  studies.  (Bhaga- 

3)  Bharadvaja  in  the  role  of  a  magician.     The    asrama    of 
Bharadvaja    was     in    Citrakuta    and     Sri   Rama    and 
Laksmana  in  the  beginning  of  their   exile   went  to    his 
asrama  accepting  his  blessings.  Bharata   on   his    return 
from    Kekaya    knew  about  the  exile  of  his  brothers  and 
hoping  to  bring  them  back  to  Ayodhya  went  in   search 
of  them  with  a  big  retinue  of  soldiers  and  men.  Keeping 
the    retinue   outside,  Bharata    went    to    the    asrama   of 
Bharadvaja.  The  latter  decided  to  give  Bharata   and  his 
people  a  grand  reception  and  calling  Visvakarma  to  his 
side  asked  him  to  arrange  a  royal  banquet    that    night. 
Devas,    Gandharvas,  Apsarases,    Astadikpalas    and    all 
such  people  were  invited  for  the  night.  Renowned  dancers 
from  devaloka  like  Ghrtaci,  Hema,  VisvacI  Misrakesi  and 
Alambusa  appeared    for   entertainment.  Even  Vanarajl 
took   part  in  the  dance.    Dishes    of    food  came  to    the 
guests  of  their  own  accord.    The  night  came  to  an  end 
wonderfully  and  at  daybreak  everything  vanished  and 
all  were   amazed  at  the  magic  of  the  sage.   (Sarga  91, 
Ayodhya  Kanda,  Valmiki  Ramayana). 

4)  Drona's  origin.     Drona  was  the    son  born    to  Bhara- 
dvaja   of    the    celestial    woman,    Ghrtaci.   (see   under 

5)  How  Bharadvaja  died  once  but  was  born  again.  See  under 

6 )  The  name  BLaradvdja.  This  is  how  the   connotation  of 
the  word  is  explained. 

B  hare 'su  tan  bhare  sisyan 
Bhare  devan  bhare  dvijfm 

Bhare  ca  bharyamavyajad 

Bharadvajo'smi  sobhane 

(I  protect  even  those  who  are  not  my  sons,  I  protect 
my  disciples,  I  protect  devas  and  the  brahmins.  I 
protect  my  wife  and  all  these  I  do  with  ease  and  so  I 
am  named  Bharadvaja).  (Bhiigavata) 

7)   Other  details. 

(1)  Bharadvaja    once    gave   refuge    in    his  asrama  to 
Manorama,  daughter  of  the  King   of  Kalihga    and  her 
son.  (See  under  Manorama) . 

(2)  The  sixth  mandala  of  Rgveda   contains    the   songs 
of  Bharadvaja. 

( 3)  He  was  among  the  sages  who  once  went  to  Dvaraka 
and  cursed  Samba.  (See  under  Samba) . 

(4)  Bharadvfija   had   a   daughter    Devavarnim   whom 
Visravas  married  and  got  the  son,  Kubera.   (see    under 

(5)  Once  Bharadvaja  was  travelling  through  an    unin- 
habited forest  with  his  son  when    he  became    exhausted 
by  hunger    and   he  then    begged  of    a    sudra,    Prthu, 
several  cows.  (Sloka  107,  Chapter  1,  Manusmrti) . 

(6)  This  sage    took  part  in  a  birthday  celebrations  of 
Arjuna.  (Sloka  57,  Chapter  122,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.). 

(7)  Because  of  the  blessing  of  Bharadvaja  Bharata    got 
a  son  named  Bhumanyu.    (Sloka  22,  Chapter   94,    Adi 
Parva,  M.B.). 

(8)  Bharadvaja  taught  the  secret  of  the  missile  Agenya 
to  Agnivesa.     (Sloka    39,    Chapter    129,    Adi    Parva, 

(9)  He    worshipped    Brahma  sitting  in  the  council  of 
Brahma.   (Sloka  22,  Chapter  11,  Sabha  Parva,  M.B.) . 

(10)  This  sage  came  to  the  battlefield  during  the  Maha- 
bharata    battle    and   requested   Drona  to  lay  down  his 
missile.   (Sloka  35,  Chapter  196,   Drona  Parva,  M.B.) . 

(1 1)  Once  Bhrgu  Maharsi  asked  him  some  questions  on 
the  creation  of  this  universe  and    Bharadvaja  gave  him 
satisfactory    answers.     (Chapter    182,     Santi    Parva, 

(12)  This    sage    performed  the  sacrifice  Putrakamesti, 
and  gave  a  son  to   Divodasa.   (Chapter  30,   Anusasana 
Parva,  M.B.). 

BHARADVAJA  III.  The  eldest  son  of  the  Agni,  Samyu. 
(Sloka  5,  Chapter  219,  Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BHARADVAJA  IV.  A  renowned  sage.  Bharata,  a  King 
of  the  Puru  line  of  kings,  had  no  sons  and  as  he  was 
spending  his  days  in  sorrow  Marutta  gave  Bharata  this 
Bharadvaja  as  a  son.  Bharadvaja  who  was  by  birth  a 
brahmin  from  then  onwards  became  a  Ksatriya. 
(Matsya  Purana  49.  27-39  and  Vayu  Purana  99.  152- 

BHARADVAJA  V.  A  maharsi  born  of  the  line  of  Arigi- 
ras.  He  was  the  father  of  Yavakrlta  and  a  friend  of 
Raibhya,  son  of  VisVamitra. 

Once  Raibhya  created  a  Kritya  and  that  Kritya  killed 
Bharadvaja's  son  Yavakrlta.  Unable  to  bear  the  loss  of  his 
son  Bharadvaja  was  preparing  to  give  up  his  own  life 
by  jumping  into  the  fire  when  Arvavasu  brought  to  life 
Yavakrita  and  gave  him  to  the  sage.  Immensely  pleas- 
ed at  the  regain  of  his  son  Bharadvaja  ended  his  life 
on  earth  and  went  to  heaven.  (M.B.,  Vana  Parva, 

BHARADVAJA  VI.  A  brahmarsi  who  lived  in  the  Purva- 
manvantara.  He  was  living  on  the  shore  of  Ganga 
doing  rigorous  penance.  One  day  desirous  of  conduct- 
ing a  special  type  of  Yajna  he  went  to  bathe  in  the 


river  along  with  other  sages.  There  he  saw  the  celes- 
tial beauty,  Ghrtaci,  standing  in  all  splendour  after  her 
bath.  Bharadvaja  had  seminal  emission  and  from  that 
was  born  a  daughter,  Srutavati,  to  him.  (Chapter  47, 
Salya  Parva,  M.B.). 

BHARADVAJA  VII.  A  great  scholar  well-versed  in 
all  the  Sustras.  He  is  the  author  of  'Dharmasiitra'  and 
'Srautasiitra'.  (The  Visvavidyalaya  of  Bombay  keeps 
a  hand  written  copy  of  his  workSrautasiitra  written  in 
I'andu  script). 

BHARADVAJA  I.  A  Maharsi.  It  was  he  who  convinced 
Dyumatsena,  father  of  Satyavan  that  he  (Satyavan) 
would  be  endowed  with  long  life.  (Vana  Parva,  Chapter 
288,  Verse  16). 

BHARADVAJA  II.  The  collective  name  of  a  particular 
sect  of  preceptors  mentioned  in  the  Upanisads.  The 
Brhadaranyaka  Upanisad  refers  to  this  sect  of  preceptors 
as  disciples  of  Bharadvaja,  Piirasarya,  Valaka,  Kau§ika, 
Aitareya,  Asurayana  and  Baijavapayana. 

BHARADVAJA  III.  A  grammarian.  According  to  the 
Rktantra,  pratiSakhya  of  Samaveda,  it  was  Brahma, 
who  first  composed  the  science  of  grammar.  This 
science  was  taught  by  Brahma  to  others  in  the  following 
order  :  Brahma  to  Brhaspati,  he  to  Indra,  Indra  to 
Bharadvaja  and  he  to  his  disciples. 
Panini  has  discussed  the  grammatical  concepts  of  Bhara- 
dvaja. Rkpratisakhya  and  Taittiriya  have  quoted  the 
opinions  of  this  grammarian. 

BHARADVAJA(M).  A  place  of  habitation  in  ancient 
Bharata.  (Sloka  68,  Chapter  9,  Bhlsma  Parva,  M.B.). 

BHARADVAjATlRTHA.  One  of  the  five  sacred  places 
(bathing  ghats  in  sacred  rivers).  (See  Varga). 

BHARADVAjI.  A  famous  Indian  river  mentioned  in 
the  Puranas.  (Bhlsma  Parva,  Chapter  9,  Verse  29). 

BHARADVAjIPUTRA.  A  preceptor,  who  was  a  dis- 
ciple of  Parasarlputra.  In  theBrhadaranyakopanisad  he 
is  referred  to  in  many  contexts  as  Vatslmandavlputra. 

One  of  the  twentyseven  constellations. 
Punya  is  assured  if  one  gives  as  gift  a  cow  to  a  brah- 
min on  that  day.  (Sloka  35,  Chapter  64,  AnuSasana 
Parva,  M.B.). 

BHARATA  I.  Son  of  Dusyanta  born  of  Sakuntala. 
1  )Genealogj>.  Descending  in  order  from  Visnu  -  Brahma- 
Atri-Candra-Budha-Pururavas-Ayus-Nahusa  -  Yayati  - 
Puru-Janamejaya  -  Pracinva  -  Pravira-Namasyu  -  Vita- 
bhaya-Surtdu-Bahuvidha-  Samyati  -  Rahovadi  -  Raud- 
2)Birth.  Dusyanta  was  once  hunting  in  the  forests  when 
he  hit  a  fawn  with  his  arrow.  The  fawn  (led  to  the 
ASrama  of  Kanva  Muni  and  the  king  followed  it.  On 
reaching  the  ASrama  grounds  he  saw  Sakuntala  water- 
ins;  the  plants  helped  by  her  companions  Anasuya  and 
Priyamvada.  Dusyanta  and  Sakuntala  fell  in  love  with 
each  other  at  first  sight.  Kanva  was  absent  from  the 
Asrama  and  the/  married  according  to  the  Gandharva 
rites  and  Sakuntala  became  pregnant  soon.  The  king 
gave  her  his  signet  ring  as  a  sign  of  faith  and  left  for 
his  palace.  When  Dusyanta  left  her  Sakuntala  fell  into 
a  deep  reverie  and  she  never  knew  about  the  arrival  of 
the  arrogant  sage,  Durvasas  to  the  asVama.  Durvasas 
mistook  her  as  disrespectful  and  cursed  her  saying  that 
she  would  be  forgotten  by  the  man  of  whom  she  was 
thinking  then.  Sakuntala  never  knew  about  the  curse 

1 18  BHARATA  II 

Kanva  Muni  when  he  returned  to  the  Airama  andknew 
everything,  sent  Sakuntala  to  the  palace  of  Dusyanta. 
But  King  Dusyanta  never  recognised  her  and  when 
Sakuntala  was  returning  deeply  grieved  Menaka  her 
mother,  took  her  and  left  her  in  theasramaof  KaSyapa. 
There  Sakuntala  delivered  a  son.  The  boy  grew  brave 
and  fearless  and  he  could  subdue  even  the  wildest  of 
animals  around  there.  KaSyapa,  therefore,  named  him 

Once  when  Dusyanta  was  returning  home  after  visiting 
Indra  he  saw  Sakuntala,  recognised  her,  and  took  her 
and  the  boy  to  his  palace.  This  was  the  boy  who  later 
on  became  known  as  Bharata.  (Chapter  73,  Adi  Parva, 

3)  Marriage  and  reign.  Bharata  was  a  partial  incarna- 
tion of  Mahavisnu.  Even  while  he  was  young  he  became 
a  ruler  and  conquering  the  world  destroyed  the  wicked. 
Bharata  had  three  wives.  All  the  sons  born  to  them 
were  bad  and  so  the  mothers  killed  them  all.  Aggrieved 
over  the  loss  of  his  sons  he  worshipped  the  devas  to 
get  a  son  for  him.  At  that  time  the  great  preceptor 
Brhaspati  forcibly  married  Mamata  the  wife  of  his 
brother.  Mamata  was  pregnant  then  and  when  she 
conceived  from  Brhaspati  also  she  bore  two  children. 
On  delivery  she  threw  the  child  of  Brhaspati  in  the 
forests  and  went  away  with  the  other  son. 
The  Devas  took  care  of  the  discarded  child  and  named 
him  Bharadvaja  and  gave  the  child  to  Bharata.  Bharata 
gave  the  boy  the  name  Vitatha  (Dlrghatamas) .  Bharata 
ruled  over  his  land  for  twentyseven  thousand  years  and 
the  land  was,  therefore,  called  Bharata.  (Sloka  96, 
Chapter  2,  Adi  Parva,  M.B.) . 

After  ruling  the  land  ideally  he  left  for  the  forests 
entrusting  the  land  to  his  son,  Vitatha.  (Navama 
Skandha,  Bhagavata) . 

Vitatha    also  was  called  Bharata  and  he  had  five  sons: 
Suhotra,  Suhota,  Gaya,  Garbha  and   Suketu.  (Chapter 
278,  AgniPurana). 
BHARATA  II.     Son  of  Dasaratha. 

1)  Genealogy.  Descending  in  order  from  Visnu-Brahma- 
Marici-KaSyapa-Vivasvan  -  Vaivasvatamanu  -  Iksvaku- 
Vikuksi-SaSida-Kakutstha-Anenas-Prthulasva  -Prasena- 
jit  -  Yuvanasva  -  Mandhata  -  Purukutsa  -   Trasadasyu- 
Satyavrta-(Tri§ahku)-HariScandra-Rohitasva  -  Harita- 
Cuncu-Sudeva-Bharuka  -  Bahuka  -  Sagara  -  Asamanjas- 
Amsuman-Bhaglratha-Srutanabha-Sindhudvlpa  -  Ayuta- 
yus-Rtuparna-Sarvakama-Sudas  -  Mitrasaha  (Kalmasa- 
pada)-Asmaka-Malaka-Khatvanga      (Dilipa,     Dirgha- 

2)  Birth.  Dasaratha,  King  of  Ayodhya,  had  three  wives  : 
Kausalya,  Kaikeyi  and  Sumitra.    Kausaly.i  gave   birth 
to    Sri    Rama,    Kaikeyi    to    Bharata  and  Sumitra  to 
Laksmana  and  Satrughna.  Kaikeyi,  mother  of  Bharata, 
was  the  sister  of  Yudhajit,  Raja   of  Kekeya.    Bharata 
was    born   on   the  day    of  Puya.    (Sloka  14,  Sarga  18, 
Valmiki  Ramayana) 

DaSaratha  remained  in  sorrow  without  children  for  a 
very  long  time  and  then  he  performed  a  Putrakamesti 
yaga  (A  sacrificial  ceremony  to  get  children)  with 
the  Maharsi  Rsya'rnga  as  the  officiating  priest.  From 
the  sacred  fire  arose  a  divine  figure  carrying  a  pot  of 
pudding  and  it  was  after  taking  that  pudding  that  the 
wives  of  Da;aratha  became  pregnant.  (Sarga  15, 
Balaklnda,  Valmiki  Ramayana) . 




3)  Till  the  end  of  Sri  Rama's  forest  life.  The  sons  of 
Dasaratha  married  the  daughters  of  Janaka,  King  of 
Mithila.  Sri  Rama  married  Sita,  Bharata,  Mandavi, 
Laksmana,  tjrmila  and  Satrughna,  Srutakirti. 
Dasaratha  made  arrangements  to  crown  Rama  as  King 
and  then  leave  for  the  forests  and  lead  an  ascetic  life. 
At  that  time  Bharata  and  Satrughna  were  in  the 
country  of  Kekaya  with  their  uncle,  Yudhajit.  When 
the  day  of  coronation  was  drawing  near  Kaikeyi 
demanded  of  Dasaratha  the  execution  of  two  boons 
which  were  once  promised  by  Dasaratha  to  her  long 
ago  during  a  battle  between  the  devas  and  asuras.  One 
of  them  was  to  crown  her  son,  Bharata,  as  king  and  the 
other  to  send  Rama  to  the  forests  for  a  period  of 
fourteen  years.  Dasaratha  was  shocked  to  hear  that. 
But,  without  any  hesitation,  Rama  and  Laksmana 
accompanied  by  Sita  went  to  the  forests  and  Dasaratha 
overcome  with  immense  grief  caused  by  this  unplea- 
sant turn  of  events  fell  down  dead.  Messengers  were 
sent  then  to  Kekaya  to  bring  Bharata  and  after  travel- 
ling for  three  days  Bharata  and  Satrughna  reached 
Ayodhya.  Though  they  were  not  informed  of  the  death 
of  their  father  they  were  worried  all  the  way  because 
of  the  several  bad  omens  which  they  saw.  On  entering 
Ayodhya  they  were  shocked  to  find  all  the  roads  deso- 
late and  arriving  at  the  palace  they  found  it  silent  and 
gloomy.  Kaikeyi  then  told  him  all  that  had  happened 
and  when  Bharata  knew  that  his  mother  was  at  the 
root  of  all  this  calamity  his  rage  knew  no  bounds. 
Forgetting  himself  he  drew  from  the  sheath  the  glitter- 
ing sword  and  stood  before  his  mother  with  the  drawn 
sword  wavering  to  strike  or  not  to  strike  and  mused  to 
himself  "No,  Not  a  woman  and  not  one's  own  mother, 
No,  it  should  not  be  done".  Immediately  after  this  was 
decided,  he  swung  the  sword  straight  to  his  throat. 
But  adroitly  Satrughna  intervened  and  swept  away  the 
sword  before  it  fell  at  its  aim.  This  strong  move  of 
Satrughna  brought  Bharata  to  his  senses  and  he  looked 
at  his  mother  so  fiendishly  that  at  his  stare  his  mother 
turned  pale  like  a  flower  brought  near  a  burning  flame. 
Bharata  immediately  changed  into  the  dress  of  a 
Sannyasi  and  started  to  go  to  the  forests.  Satrughna 
followed  his  brother.  Vasistha  also  started.  The  news 
spread  like  wildfire  and  people  began  to  crowd  at  the 
palace  eager  to  follow  the  brothers.  Very  soon  a  huge 
procession  was  seen  moving  towards  the  forests.  Vasistha 
and  ArundhatI  in  a  chariot  in  the  front,  Kausalya  and 
Sumitra  in  another  next  to  it  and  Bharata  and  Satru- 
ghna closely  following  the  chariots,  walking.  People 
joined  the  procession  from  behind.  The  great  crowd 
of  people  reached  the  banks  of  the  river  Gariga.  Guha 
coming  to  know  of  the  great  exile  of  people  from 
Ayodhya  through  spies  went  and  saw  Bharata,  at  first 
in  disguise,  and  later  as  himself  made  his  acquaintance. 
He  then  took  Bharata  and  Satrughna  across  the  river 
to  the  presence  of  Sri  Rama  at  Citrakuta. 
When  they  reached  Citrakuta  only  Bharata-Satrughna, 
Vasistha  and  ArundhatI,  Kausalya  and  Sumitra  entered 
the  agrarna  of  Sri  Rama,  all  the  others  remaining  out- 
side. When  Rama  and  Laksmana  were  told  about  the 
death  of  their  father  they  were  filled  with  grief.  All  the 
sons,  then,  Vasistha  officiating,  performed  the  obsequies 
of  their  father.  Rama  and  Bharata  then  discussed  the 
future.  Sri  Rama  persisted  in  his  vow  and  said  he 
would  return  to  his  country  only  after  fourteen  years 

and  insisted  that  Bharata  should  rule  the  country 
during  that  period.  Bharata  accepted  the  arrangement 
saying  that  if  his  brother  did  not  come  back  after  four- 
teen years  he  would  give  up  his  life  by  jumping  into 
the  fire.  Sii  Rama  then  gave  his  sandals  to  Bharata  who 
accepting  the  same  with  due  respect  returned  home 
followed  by  others.  On  reaching  Ayodhya  Bharata  did 
not  go  to  the  royal  palace  which  he  considered  as  empty 
because  of  the  absence  of  his  brother,  Rama  and 
abhorrent  because  of  the  presence  of  his  mother,  Kaikeyi. 
Instead,  he  went  to  a  nearby  village  called  Nandi  and 
installing  the  sandals  there  lived  there  and  ruled  the 

4)  Return  of  Sri  Rama.  Sri  Rama  when  he  came  back 
to  Ayodhya  after  fourteen  years  was  crowned  King. 
Bharata  got  two  sons  of  his  wife  Mandavi,  Subahu  and 
Surasena.  While  they  were  thus  living  happily  in 
Ayodhya,  message  was  sent  through  an  ascetic  by 
Yudhajit  from  Kekaya  that  some  gandharvas  were 
creating  trouble  in  that  country.  It  was  the  state  of 
Sindhu  in  Kekaya  which  was  subjected  to  this 
molestation  and  on  the  advice  of  Rama  Bharata  went 
and  subdued  the  trouble,  killing  the  gandharvas.  He 
then  created  two  small  states  on  either  side  of  Sindhu 
and  made  his  two  sons  the  Kings  of  those  states. 
When  Sri  Rama  gave  up  his  life  in  Sarayu  river  and 
rose  to  heaven  as  Visnu  Bharata  and  Satrughna  also 
gave  up  their  lives  and  took  the  forms  of  the  conch 
and  the  wheel  which  adorn  the  hands  of  Visnu. 
(Uttara  Ramayana) . 
BHARATA  III.  A  son  of  Rsabha. 

1 )  Genealogy  and  birth.   Descending  in  order  from  Visnu- 
Brahma  -  Svayambhuvamanu  -  Priyavrata  -  Agnldhra- 

Emperor  Priyavrata  partitioned  his  empire  to  his  eight 
children.  Agnidhra  got  Jambudvipa.  Agnldhra  had 
nine  sons :  Nabhi,  Kimpurusa,  Harivarsa,  Ilavrta, 
Ramya,  Hiranvan,  Kuru  Bhadraiva  and  Ketumala.  On 
the  death  of  the  father  Jambudvipa  was  divided  into 
nine  states  and  Nabhi  got  the  land  called  Hima.  Nabhi 
married  Merudevi  and  got  a  son,  Rsabha.  Rsabha  had 
a  hundred  sons  and  Bharata  was  the  eldest.  (Chapter  1, 
ArhSam  2,  Visnu  Purana) . 

2)  Marriage,    administration   and    entry   into  ASrama  life. 
Bharata    took  over  the  administration  of  the    kingdom 
at  the  death  of  his  father,  Rsabha.  He  married  Panca- 
jani  daughter  of  ViSvarupa.  They  had  five  sons,  Sumati, 
Rastrabhrt,  Sudarsana,  Avarana  andDhumraketu.  The 
Paiicama   Skandha    of  Bhagavata   contains  a  statement 
to  the  effect  that   India  got    the    name  Bharata   from 
this    king.     (It    is    worthwhile     remembering   at    this 
juncture  a  previous  statement  that  the    name    Bharata 
was  obtained  from  Bharata,  son  of  Dusyanta).  Bharata 
like    his    forefather  was    very    erudite  and  affectionate 
and  always  respected  his  duties.  He  always   meditated 
on  Brahma  and  in  his  heart  there  shone    the    Parama- 
purusa  in  the  figure  of  Vasudeva  adorned  with  Srivatsa, 
Kaustubha,    Vanamala,    Sarhkha,    Cakra,    Gada    and 
Padma.  He  ruled  the  country  for  a  crore  of  years    and 
after  that  dividing  the  country  among  his  sons  went  to 
the  avrama  of  Pulaha  Maharsi  to  spend  the  rest   of  his 
life    there.    On    the    rocks  lying  in  the  river  flowing  in 
front  of  the  Asrama  were  the  marks    of  Cakra  on    one 
side  and  Nabhi  on  the  other  and    the   river    therefore 
came  to  be  known  as  Cakranabhi.  Bathing  in  this  river 


and    doing   puja    Bharata    lived  there  oblivious  of  the 
world  outside.   (Pancama  Skandha,  Bhagavata). 

3)  Bharata  and  the  deer.     Bharata  led  a    purely  ascetic 
life    performing    everyday    the    rites     laid    down    by 
scriptures  and  muttering  the  mystic  formula  of  Brahma- 
ksara.  One  day  a  thirsty  pregnant  deer  went    to    drink 
water  in  a  nearby  pond.  As  it  was  drinking  it    heard 
the     loud    roar   of  a  lion  nearby.  Frightened  the  poor 
animal  without  even  waiting  to   quench    its  thirst    ran 
into  the  forest  and  on  its  way  delivered  a  child  and  the 
deer-babe    fell   into  the  river.  The  deer  exhausted  and 
tormented  by  fear  ran  into  a  cave  and  fell  down  dead. 
Bharata    happened  to  see    the    new-born  deer  floating 
on  the  river  and  took  it  to  his  asrama.    From  then    on- 
wards   Bharata's    mind  was  diverted  from  the  spiritual 
to  the  mundane  effort  of  taking  care  of  the  young  deer. 
The  deer  followed  him  wherever  he  went  and  if  it  did 
not    turn    up    in    time  in    the    evening  after   grazing 
Bharata  went  about  in  search  of  it  weeping.  Years  went 
by  and  Bharata  became  old  and  died  with  the  name    of 
the  deer  on  his    lips.  (Pancama  Skandha,  Bhagavata). 

4)  Rebirths    of  Bharata.     Because    he    died    with   the 
thought  of  the    deer    in  his  mind  he  was    reborn  as  a 
deer.    The   deer  was  aware  of  his   previous  birth   and 
regretted    that   he  spent  the  life  of  a  man  for  the  sake 
of  a    deer.    The    deer,    therefore,    left  the  house  of  his 
mother  in  the  mountain  of  Kalanjara  and  went  to  the 
airama   of  Pulaha.    The  pious    animal  daily  bathed  in 
the    river  and  died  there  on  the  bank  of  that  river.  So 
in  its  next  life  the  deer  was    born  as    the    son    of   a 
brahmin  in  the  line  of  Arigiras.  That  brahmin  had  two 
wives  and  got  nine  sons  of  his  first  wife  and  one  of  the 
second.  The  son  born  to  the  second  wife  was  none  other 
than  Bharata.  In  due  course  the  brahmin  died  and   his 
second  wife  jumped  into  the  funeral  pyre  and  ended  her 
life.   Thrown   an  orphan   Bharata  became  a  puppet  in 
the  hands  of  his  brothers.  Bharata  was  asked    to    look 
after  the  cattle  and  fields  of  his  brothers  for  his  living. 
With    great  forbearance  Bharata  did  all  he  was  told. 
One  day    Bharata  was   keeping  watch  over  the  fields  of 
his   brothers.    It  was   midnight.  In  the  neighbourhood 
the    Candalas   were   making   merry  over  the  birth  of  a 
child  to  one  of  the  women.  Some  of  them  were  bringing  a 
man   bound    by   ropes    to  be  given  as  'Narabali'  to  the 
goddess    Kali.    (Narabali   is    the  offering  of  a   human 
being  with    his  head  cut  off  to  propitiate  a  deity).  On 
the    way    the    man    escaped     and    the     disappointed 
Candalas  were  roaming  about  in  search  of  a   substitute 
when  they    came   across   Bharata    keeping  watch  over 
the    fields.    Immediately    he  was  bound    by  ropes  and 
taken    before    the   idol   of  Kali.  The   effulgence  of  the 
brahmin  astounded  Kali  and  getting  angry  for  bringing 
such   a    pious   brahmin   for  sacrifice   she  devoured  the 
Candalas  and  allowed  the  brahmin  to  go  free. 
Escaping  from  there  Bharata  reached  a  village  walking 
all   the  way.   That   village   was  being  ruled  over  by  a 
king    called  Rahiigana  and    that  king  was  going  to  see 
Bhagavan  Kapila  Maharsi  along  the  banks  of  the   river 
Iksumati  in  a  palanquin.  The  palanquin  had  not  enough 


bearers  and  so  the  brahmin  was  asked  to  join  the 
team  of  bearers.  As  they  were  moving  the  palanquin 
shook  because  of  the  wrong  steps  kept  by  Bharata.  The 
king  reprimanded  Bharata  and  Bharata  then  gave  the 
king  fitting  replies  based  on  the  ethics  of  Vedanta.  The 
erudition  of  Bharata  greatly  impressed  the  king  and  he 
stepped  down  from  the  palanquin  and  bowed  to 

Bharata  went  from  there  to  the  forests  singing  devo- 
tional songs  in  praise  of  Visnu  and  at  last  attained 
salvation.  (Pancama  Skandha,  Bhagavata). 

BHARATA  IV.  A  sage  and  the  famous  author  of  Natya- 
sastra.  He  was  a  critic  who  lived  around  the  year  400 
B.C.  His  book  on  Natyasastra  (Histrionics)  is  world 
famous.  Kalidasa  in  the  second  act  of  his  drama, 
Vikramorvaslya  states  that  this  Bharata  used  to  coach 
the  devas  in  the  art  of  acting.  NatyaSastra  is  a  book 
comprising  thirtyseven  chapters  dealing  with  the  art  of 
dance  and  music.  He  has  written  in  detail  about  the 
four  Alamkaras,  Upama,  DTpaka,  Rupaka  and  Yamaka 
and  also  about  the  ten  requisites  of  a  Kavya.  He  has 
not  forgotten  to  write  about  the  defects  and  demerits 
of  Kavya  also.  Commentaries  on  Nafyasastra  have 
been  written  by  lions  in  the  profession  :  Mitragupta, 
Harsavardhana,  Saiikuka,  Udbhata,  Bhattanayaka  and 
Abhinav  agupta.  Of  these  'Abhinavabharat!'  the  com- 
mentary written  by  Abhinavagupta  is  the  only  one 
freely  available  now. 

BHARATA  V.  The  Mahabharata  speaks  about  a  few 
other  Bharatas  who  were  sons  of  Agni.  Samyu  is  a  son 
of  Agni  known  as  Bharata.  This  Bharata  has  got 
another  name,  Urjja.  (Sloka  6,  Chapter  219,  Vana 
Parva,  M.B.) .  There  is>an  Agni  of  name  Bharata  with 
a  son  named  Bharata.  When  this  Agni  is  propitiated 
one  gets  healthy  and  strong  and  so  this  Agni  is  called 
Pustiman  also.  (Sloka  7,  Chapter  219,  Vana  Parva, 
M.B.).  There  is  another  Bharata  son  of  an  Agni 
called  Adbhuta.  It  is  this  Agni  that  burns  dead  bodies. 
As  this  Agni  lives  permanently  in  Agnistoma  Yajnas;  it 
gets  the  name  of  Niyata  also.  (Sloka  6,  Chapter  222, 
Vana  Parva,  M.B.) . 

BHARATA  (MAHABHARATA) .  An  epic  written  by 

1)  General  information.  The  Mahabharata  is  an  epic. 
Bharata  is  acclaimed  as  the  first  emperor  of  Bharata. 
The  theme  of  this  great  epic  is  the  fight  between  the 
two  lines  of  princes  belonging  to  the  dynasty  of  Bharata. 
That  is  why  the  book  is  called  Mahabharata. 
The  great  size  of  the  volume  and  the  greatness  of 
the  wisdom  contained  therein  have  contributed  much 
to  its  getting  the  name,  Mahabharata.  Once  the 
devas  put  the  Mahabharata  in  one  pan  of  a  balance 
and  the  Vedas  in  the  other  pan.  Then  the  devas 
were  convinced  that  the  Mahabharata  weighed  more 
than  all  the  Vedas  put  together.  (Slokas  269-271, 
Chapter  1,  Adi  Parva,  M.B. ).*  This  book  contains 
over  a  lakh  of  verses.  There  is  no  subject  on  earth 
which  is  not  dealt  with  in  the  Mahabharata.  None  of 

*     Pura    kila   suraih   sarvaih   saroetya   tulaya  dhrtam 
Caturbhyah    sarahasyebhyo   Vcdebhyo    hyadhikam   yada 
Tada    prabhiti     loke'smin  mahabharatamucyate 
Mahatve  ca  gurutve  ca  dhriyamanaih  yaso'dhikam 
Mahatvad    bharavatvac    ca    Mahabharatamucyate. 




the  world's  epics  is  so  big  as  Mahabharata.  In  size  the 
Mahabharata  is  double  that  of  Homer's  Iliad  and 
Odyssey  put  together.  The  following  poem  about  it  is 
worth  mentioning  now : 

Yatha  samudro  bhagavan 

Yatha  ca  himavan  girih  / 
Khyatavubhau  ratnanidhi 

Tatha  bharatamucyate  // 

Mahabharata  is  not  a  mere  epic.  It  is  a  whole  literature 
in  itself  containing  a  philosophy  which  has  been  an 
unfailing  and  perennial  source  of  spiritual  strength  to 
the  people  of  India.  Above  all  it  has  for  its  core  the 
Gita  which  is  perhaps  the  noblest  of  scriptures. 
The  Mahabharata  comprises  eighteen  books,  each  book 
being  called  a  Parva.  There  are  2109  chapters  in  it,  the 
chapters  differing  in  size.  Besides,  there  is  an  annexe 
called  Harivamsa  which  deals  with  the  life  and  history 
of  Sri  Krsna. 

2)  Contents.  The  contents  of  each  Parva  are  succinctly 
given  below:  The  Parvas  are  so  named  as  to  give  a 
hint  of  their  central  theme. 

(1)  Adi  Parva.    (Adi=  beginning) .     Pandu   and  Dhrta- 
rastra,  king  of  the  Candra  dynasty,  are  brothers.  Bhisma 
brought    them   up.  Dhrtarastra  was  born  blind  and  he 
got   a   hundred   children  of  his    wife  Gandharl.  They 
were  called  the  Kauravas.  Pandu  had  two  wives  KuntI 
and    Madri    and    got    of   them    five  sons  called  the 
Pandavas  headed  by  the  eldest  Yudhisthira. 

(2)  Sabha  Parva  (Sabha  =  court) .  The    Pandavas    and 
Kauravas    lived    together    in  the  court  at  Hastinapura. 
There,    the  Kauravas  entered  into  a  game  of  dice  with 
Yudhisthira  and  through  the  deceitful  tactics  engineer- 
ed by  the  keen-witted  Sakuni,  Yudhisthira  was  defeated 
and    he    lost    everything    he  possessed.  The  Pandavas 

were  then  compelled  to  go  into  exile  to  the  forests  for 
twelve  years  and  spend  another  year  after  that  incog- 
nito. If  they  were  found  out  during  that  period  of 
incognito  they  were  to  go  into  exile  for  another  term 
of  twelve  years.  The  Pandavas  accompanied  by  Pancall 
left  for  the  forests. 

(3)  Vana  Parva     (Vana=  forest).    This    is   one  of  the 
longest  of  Parvas  and  describes  the  life  of  the  Pandavas 
in  the  forest  Kamyaka.    The    well  known  stories  'Nala 
Carita'  and  'Kiratarjuniya'  are  told  in  this   Parva'. 

(4)  Virata  Parva.